Manley Goes To State

Bella Manley qualifies for the IHSA cross country race


Dagan Brick, Writer

On Saturday, November 5th, cross country athlete Isabella Manley went to the IHSA state competition at Detweiller Park in Peoria and placed 165th of 230.

Angelique Garro, who coaches cross-country with Brian Glaza, pointed out the challenges Manley faced during the State race, a day of inclement weather.  “Bella powered through those mud puddles and sunken areas, and she did really well,” explained Garro.  “State, I felt, went amazing, we had a really cold and muddy day but Bella Manley used that to her advantage to power through the race,” said Garro.

Manley felt the state competition was the most difficult race that she had because the course was muddy and covered in ruts and there was, “no traction, and I felt like I was running in place.”

She said, “I gave it my all, I didn’t really get the time I wanted but, I really tried in this season and I was really just grateful to be there”

Manley believes that her best race was at the Peoria High Invitational where she ran her first 19-minute race.   “I felt like I ran the best race of my life there,” said Manley.

To prepare for the season, the team began with one-and-a-half mile runs, increasing the mileage every single week.    “Even when I didn’t want to I pushed myself to put in the effort,” said Manley.  “I tried to make cross country my only focus,” she explained.

Manley has participated in cross country for four years.  “Cross country wasn’t available to Hollis yet.   I always just did track.   I always did the mile since no one else did it; I tried it and I enjoyed it. I just love running in general, and I found out cross country was even more running, so once I got to high school, I finally tried it out”

Manley does have plans to continue running in the future. “I am currently deciding between two schools that have already recruited me for cross country and track,” she explained.