MileStat.com visited the Mills Godwin cross country team in the West End of Richmond on Tuesday morning for a high quality workout which included a 20 minute tempo run, an all out 600, and 4x200 meter repeats. The Mills Godwin boys had one of the most successful seasons in school history last fall led by Grant Pollock, but graduated six of their top seven as this fall will be a rebuilding year behind lone top 7 varsity returnee in junior Dan De Nijs.
The potential for great success shifts to the Mills Godwin girls this year as not only should they be vying for one of the four state meet berths out of the Central Region, but their great returning depth could help them challenge Maggie Walker for the Colonial District title. A lot of the program's recent success and improvement has to be attributed to their young coach Jon Lauder, who has challenged the Godwin runners to become more competitive since coming on board several years ago as an assistant coach to long-time coach Kemper Towler. The former University of Richmond and Oakton runner has since become a head coach in cross country and track.
The Godwin girls have six girls back who have ran under 6 minutes in the 1600, three under 12 in the 3200, and three in the 19 minute range for the 5K. The big key for their success this season might be finding a front runner or at least finishing reasonably close to their rival team's top finishers. Lizzie Powell and Katie Wood look to be the top candidates as both were just a few places away from qualifying individually for the state outdoor championships as Powell ran 5:20 in the 1600 and Wood ran 11:45 in the 3200.
With experienced seniors Catelyn Hill and Anne Menefee and a rising talent in sophomore Courtney Burton, Mills Godwin has a top five pack of girls in place which as they move up together can take their program to new level. Watch workout video and interviews below!