Deenik dashes to top 40 at Algonac Invitational

Emily Colen '23, Staff Writer

THE NEXT STEP Varsity runner Morgan Deenik ’24 crushes the course at Algonac, on Thursday, Sept. 8. (Amanda Frantz ’23)

Beginning with 5k runs in elementary school to now becoming a cross country (XC) medalist at South, Morgan Deenik ’24 has been consistently passionate about running. A couple weeks ago an injury to her calf looked to postpone this star athlete from running this season. However, a combination of ice, stretching and perseverance allowed Deenik to return to compete at the Algonac invitational, where she was able to win a Top 40 placement medal.

Deenik recalls being slightly nervous about the XC status this season as she had never sustained a strain to the calf before.

“It was worrying that I could possibly be out my whole junior season,” Deenik said. “I’ve just had to keep up with all my recovery stuff: lots of stretching, rolling, icing; it’s been getting better.”

Thankfully, Deenik’s recovery occurred within a matter of weeks allowing for her to attend the Algonac invitational in which she placed 37th and was awarded a medal. Although Deenik claims the Algonac meet wasn’t her best race, the medal she was awarded posed as a significant reminder for her to keep on with pursuing her running future.

“The race was not my best time or exactly at the place I wanted, but it gave me confidence that even on a bad day, I could still be awarded a medal,” Deenik said. “It was also a sign that my calf strain was recovering and I didn’t need to stress about it as much.”

Showing immense endurance through this obstacle of an injury, Deenick is now tackling two new goals she hopes to accomplish this XC season.

“The ultimate goal would be breaking 20 minutes on a 5k, but overall I would like to improve my mentality going into the race,” Deenik said. “I want to make sure I’m staying positive because I feel like everyone runs best when they are happy and I just want to make sure I am keeping it as a fun thing for myself.”