SSN: Athlete Feature: Ash Caylor

Hamilton Southeastern senior, Ash Caylor tells the challenges they have faced as a cross-country team when running and how they have overcame them.


Grace Duffy

The sight of the sun just peeking through the clouds, the feeling of dewy grass. The smell of sweat and the feeling of anticipation. Stretching as much as possible to help earn a better time. The sight of officials with clipboards recording times and saying, “you got this” right before the big run. The race is off and it’s time to give it your all.

Most of the seniors on the cross-country team have been running and working hard for past four years. Most of them agree that the nerves never go away before a big race. Senior leader, Ash Caylor, has been influential since his freshman year. Caylor notes that being prepared mentally is just as important as being prepared physically. “I’ve improved from my freshmen to senior year to now by strategizing and going through the race before the start begins.”

The cross-country team has had an overall tough season and has faced many difficult teams. Cross-country is not a single person sport, if one person isn’t having the best day then it affects the entire team. Talking and communicating with your teammates is one of the most important qualities about this sport. Senior Ash Caylor talks about how he can improve on effectively communicating with his team. “With now being a senior leader, I have found it challenging because I’m not great at talking to a lot of people,” Caylor said. Being apparent about what you need to improve is just as important as teamwork. This goes to show the potential they have from this senior leader.

Cross-country isn’t just a sport that you start in a day, but instead where you must practice every day and start gradually getting better. Changing your diet to get the most amount of nutrition. Practicing and wanting constant feedback to improve. These senior leaders are what help make the Hamilton Southeastern cross-country team.

From waking up for early practice, to after school runs, and vigorous training, everything comes down to the last couple hours of running. Through the challenges of injuries, preparing mentally, and communicating, all of the cross-country boys have flourished under Caylor’s influential leadership. His impact on the program as a whole will forever be remembered.

Story by Grace Duffy