With chest flaming and head spinning and his strides burning on the track towards the finish line, senior and Team Captain Craig Yeomans completes his best race of his senior cross country season, ending the race with a staggered gait towards the fence lining the track, hurling the fruits of his efforts at a nearby trashcan to conclude his victory. This is simply a moment in time to portray Yeomans’ love for running.
As his love for the running grows, Yeomans excels in both the sport and school, being an exceptionally impressive student and athlete here at San Lorenzo Valley High School. Interestingly enough, Yeomans focused more on being a baseball player earlier in his athletic career, only to begin running to stay in shape for baseball. “Funny how life works out like that,” Yeomans points out. Craig has been running consistently for seven years, accumulating altogether both very memorable and positive experiences with being a student athlete and much more.
Craig Yeomans’ senior year of cross country has been quite different from his recent competitive high school seasons. As a Team Captain, he has much more responsibility to deal with, more for the team than himself. Although, he does agree that being a Captain has made this year much more accomplished than compared to past years. Aside from the hardships and responsibilities as a Captain, Craig continues to be fulfilled by the joy of running, and as a team. Yeomans states, “My favorite thing about running is the sense of accomplishment after a really good workout or a really good race. However, during all of the training and the misery leading up to that, I would say that is the worst part of running.”
Yeomans is an influential, encouraging leader on the cross country team and has spotted improvement in his own career as well as the whole team’s. Yeomans adds, “I think my personal improvement through running is that I have learned to (literally and figuratively) endure the pain of certain things and to embrace challenge more openly.” He remarks that the team, both boys and girls, get along very well. Head Coach Jay Avenmarg has created a significant atmosphere that he wants to maintain as a positive environment throughout this year and additional years of training to come. Having few races left in the season, the cross country team still has at least one guaranteed race left at Pinto Lake on Wednesday, November first. Craig mentions, “We have League Finals coming up this Wednesday and we have underperformed a lot this year because of injuries, sickness, and our training regimen. Jay knows what he is doing, so we should be peaking at the right time. I think we are going to surprise some teams at League and maybe take home some medals.”
Apart from cross country (and track and field), Craig Yeomans has aspiring goals for after high school. Yeomans plans to ride an academic scholarship through a good undergrad program and go on to thrive in a strong grad program. “From there, I’m going to just ride the wave of wherever my education takes me and try to make something of myself,” Craig mentions. He also says, “I want to go into some sort of public service, ideally through the route of elected office, but I honestly just want to be a public servant.” Yeomans has had outstanding grades throughout his years of high school and is one of the top in his senior class.
On the topic of being a student athlete (and contrary to popular belief), Yeomans believes that being a student athlete really is not as difficult or challenging as it may seem. “I found that it is actually a lot harder to do well in school during my short breaks from running because doing something athletic sort of satisfies the need for me to be a spaz and also keeps me to a strict schedule,” Yeomans declares. Yeomans asserts that his academic workload this year has been much lower than last year, making this year a lot easier. He is currently taking four AP classes again, but proclaims, “As difficult as AP classes may be, nothing compares to taking APEL&C and APUSH, and two other APs at the same time.” Craig Yeomans has wholly enjoyed his time here at SLVHS as a student athlete and as a leader, and will continue to thrive in and after his high school life.
by Kayla Penny
photo by Ronald Bourret