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Peralez helps KC cross country team qualify for regionals
by Bridgette Matula
Nov 03, 2011 | 234 views | 0 0 comments | 3 3 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Senior Miguel Peralez pushes himself during the three-mile course at last week’s District 30-2A meet. Miguel has led the boys team for four years, and this year, the varsity boys group will compete as a team at regional.
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The significance didn’t dawn on the 17-year-old senior until he had finished his three miles. This was the first “last time” – and success was his only option.

There would be no next time.

“I was a little nervous for once because I was running to try and get my team to regionals, instead of just myself,” said Miguel Peralez, whose time of 18:02 won him 6th at the District Cross Country Meet Oct. 26 to help his team advance to regional this weekend.

The Badger Cross Country team placed 3rd overall to earn the right to compete Saturday at the regional meet at UTSA. It’s the first time since 2008 that the team qualified for regional, not just Miguel running solo.

“I’m very happy with all of his achievements and proud that he’s my son,” Miguel’s mom Maria Peralez said. “I was pleased and excited with the outcome of his final district race, but sad that he’s getting older.”

Ironically, Miguel said he doesn’t enjoy running because it hurts. So what is it that helps him push through till the end?

“I just tell myself that everyone else feels the same way,” Miguel said. “I think about my school, and that I have to run well for my team.”

Team spirit drives Miguel, especially this year as he is a senior and younger runners look to him for guidance.

“I feel responsible; I treat everyone on the team as a member of my family,” he said.

In every race, Miguel tells himself to “run until it hurts, then keep running because you’re not done yet” and it’s the same piece of advice he will pass on to younger teammates.

“The other boys really look up to Miguel. He has basically been the boys’ team since his freshman year,” Coach Jennifer Card said. “This year he had 12 other boys as part of his team, so he has stepped up and pushed them to give their best.”

Miguel also is not afraid to let teammates know when they are not pulling their weight, Coach Card added.

Card credits Miguel with setting the pace for future boys’ Cross Country teams.

“I felt triumphant. (But) I realized that this was my last district race, which made me sad,” Miguel said. “I would love to have just one more year.”
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