Effingham County High School

Running taking ECHS’ Walsh to college


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November 18, 2015

By Patrick Donahue


As a middle schooler, Taylor Walsh took to running. She never thought it would take her to college. The Effingham County High School cross country runner signed a national letter of intent Thursday morning with Erskine College in Due West, S.C. “I’m very, very excited and shocked that I got a scholarship, she said. “I personally don’t think I’m very good. But I’m happy I was able to pull through and my running skills were able to help my parents out. Walsh was 25th overall at the Region 3-AAAAA meet, turning in a time of 25:20. She had a time of 23:09 in a meet at Wayne County. Walsh, who has designs on becoming a veterinarian, was drawn to the atmosphere at Erskine. “I like how it has a homey feeling, she said. “It’s not a big school. She has been running since the sixth grade and ran track in middle school, winning the region championship in the two-mile. When she was in the eighth grade, she was asked to practice with the high school cross country team. “And ever since then, I’ve loved it, she said. ECHS cross country coach Mark Weese also coaches track at Ebenezer Middle praised how much effort Walsh puts into the sport. “Coaching people like Taylor makes it so easy, because she’s so dedicated, he said. “You give her a workout, you know she’s going to give it her everything. Getting a cross country scholarship is extraordinarily competitive, according to Weese. “You’re being recognized as an individual and you have to put up the times and the places, he said. “You’re just a time, you’re just a number among tons and tons of runners. Walsh had her last high school race earlier this month at the state cross country meet in Carrollton. Weese took a look at her as she toed the starting line. “She knew it was her last race, he said. “I saw her tearing up and I said, ‘do not get emotional.’ This means a lot to her and the work she has put into it is phenomenal. Walsh and the rest of the Lady Rebels cross country team earned a berth in the state meet, something they had set their sights on doing. During the middle of the season, after a couple of injuries, going to Carrollton was no sure bet. “We were very, very happy, she said. “We were very excited. I think it was pretty amazing for us seniors to go to state our senior year. It was extremely important. We were able to do our best as a team the day of region. Cross country not only makes physical demands on runners, it also pushes them mentally. “I like how it’s a mental sport. You have to push yourself to do better. You can’t go out there and think I’ve got this. You have to keep going. It’s like my stress reliever. That’s my favorite thing about that.



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