Columbia, MO – Joining Head Coach Joe Lynn in his first season with the Mizzou Women’s Cross Country team are the four freshman student-athletes for the Tigers: Sam Garrett (Columbia, MO), Kate Maxcy (West Des Moines, IA), Libby Luciani (Glendale, MO), and Maggie Angst (Lombard, IL). Although Coach Lynn didn’t have a hand in recruiting these four ladies, he was able to get to know them over the summer, and looks forward to working with them over the next four years.
“We have a great group with these four ladies,” Coach Lynn said. “As a whole, it’s a really hard-working group. They come to practice each day with positive attitudes, looking to get better any way they can.”
Individually, they are certainly bringing some talent to the team, starting with hometown girl Sam Garrett, who graduated from Rock Bridge HS with a school record in the 3200m (11:09). During her four years at Rock Bridge, Garrett was a 12-time State Qualifier for Cross Country (2008-2011) and Track in the 4x800m (2010-2012), 1600m 2009, 2012) and 3200m (2009, 2011, 2012).
“It’s exciting to have Sam on the team,” Coach Lynn said. “She had a great summer of training, and has really positioned herself well to compete with that top group of returners. Sam’s really going to help add some depth to our top 7. She hasn’t been afraid to take over and push her group in workouts, which is always exciting to see a freshman do.”
Garrett was also a four-time All-State athlete for Cross Country (2008, 2011) and Track, in the 4x800m and 3200m (2012). As captain of the 2011 Rock Bridge Cross Country team, she helped lead them to their first MSHSAA district win, sectional win, and state trophy as team runner-up in school history.
Kate Maxcy, a graduate of Valley HS, also has a good list of accomplishments, including a State Record in the 4x800m of 9:13 (2011). Maxcy was a state qualifier all four years for Cross Country, and earned All-State honors in 2008. Along with the win and record at the 2011 Iowa State Championships in the 4x800m, she was also part of the 2010 State-qualifying 4x800m team, and made it to the Championships individually in the 1500m (2009-2011) and 3000m (2009). Off the track, Maxcy is part of the Z3 Junior Elite Triathlon team, and was ranked at #18 for juniors in the U.S. by the USAT (2011).
“Kate is such a hard worker. She brings quite a dynamic background to the table being a triathlete, we are being patient in making her into a full-time runner,” said Coach Lynn.
Maggie Angst, from Glenbard East HS, was an AAU Junior Nationals Qualifier in 2010, where she took 4th in both the 1500m (4:51.08) and 3000m (10:38.4). Angst was also an IHSA State Qualifier in the 1600m (2008), 4x800m (2009), 1600m (2010), and Cross Country (2010).
“Maggie’s one of those girls you know will make others around her work hard,” commented Lynn. “She’s always got a smile on her face and is really a joy to coach. I see her having a bright future in our program.”
Rounding off the freshmen crew is Libby Luciani, who comes from Kirkwood HS. Luciani is a four-time MSHSAA Cross Country State qualifier, and a two-time MSHSSA Outdoor Track State qualifier for the 4x800m for 2009 and 2012, where her team placed third.
“Libby has probably shown as much improvement as anyone over the first three weeks of practice. We’ve been working through some ferritin issues since the middle of summer, but you can really see her turning the corner now,” said Lynn. “I expect to continue seeing Libby climb the ladder throughout the team and bridge that gap between her and the front group.”