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WashPost: Visitation’s Vivian Kelly races to another DCSAA cross-country title

"Over the first mile of Saturday’s D.C. State Athletic Association girls’ cross-country championship at Kenilworth Park, five runners were crowded together at the front of the pack. The mash-up of colors representing different schools suggested the favorite might be having an off day.

But in the middle portion of the race, when it became a slog, the training that Georgetown Visitation’s Vivian Kelly endured in Colorado over the summer paid off. The junior ran every day in high elevation for a month, just for moments such as this. As her competitors’ breathing became jagged, she felt herself pulling away, and the crowd told her what she couldn’t see.

“One hundred-meter lead!” some shouted.

“This girl is moving!” a spectator yelled.

Her advantage kept growing. She finished the 5K course in 18 minutes 27 seconds, and it took 35 more seconds for the runner-up (National Cathedral’s Cecilia Wright) to cross the line. Kelly entered as the favorite, but this dominant of a performance could not have been anticipated. The junior shaved more than a minute and a half off her winning time from last year (20:12).

“I was shocked,” Kelly said. “I honestly was just hoping to break 20 [minutes].”

Instead, she ran the fastest girls’ time at the DCSAA meet since 2017, when National Cathedral’s Page Lester finished in 18:05. ...

After a successful 2022, Kelly wanted to make sure she put herself in the best position to run in college. Alongside her two sisters, who run as well, the family took a month-long vacation to Boulder to run in higher elevation. Kelly boosted her mileage and trained every day to prepare for this season, and that more than paid off."

Washington Post's "Visitation's Vivian Kelly races to another DCSAA cross-country title," by Sam Jane, published on November 4, 2023

  • Athletics