On Friday, August 30, first-year Alosha Southern, of Wilton, Connecticut, won her first collegiate cross country meet with a time of 15:39.47 in the four-kilometer Grinnell Triangular. Although her time was almost five seconds faster than the second place finisher, the Pioneers ultimately lost the meet in a tiebreaker to Cornell College. The next home cross country meet, the Les Duke Invitational, will take place on Saturday, September 14.
When did you first start running?
I’ve been running for a long time. I started in fifth grade. My town had a youth cross country program. I carried on with it through high school and now I’m here.
What do you like about cross country?
I like that even though it’s a team sport, it’s very individually focused. You can get into your head and zone out. I prefer it over running track because you get to go places rather than just running in circles.
What do you eat before you run?
I used to always eat grapes before I ran because they have a lot of sugar in them. But I’m not superstitious and I don’t really get that nervous. I don’t have a routine that I stick to.
What is the weirdest experience you’ve had while running?
Once, I was running during our season opener in high school and I had really bad blisters on my feet. It was a really low-key race, the other team wasn’t very good, and I was going up this hill called “the Beast,” which is hard to run up, so I stopped and took off my shoes in the middle of the race. A group of boys thought I was losing my mind, but then I just kept on running.
What is your fantasy of a best race?
I think I have the best races when I’m angry. So, maybe another girl would try to trip me and then I’m behind and then I would have to catch up and I would beat her and win.
Why did you choose to go to Grinnell?
I applied here because my uncle went here. I really liked how cozy it felt and how close the community is. I wasn’t really sure I wanted to run, but now I’m glad I did because the team is great and super supportive.
What other activities do you plan to do at Grinnell?
I’m definitely interested in doing the Prison Program and I also want to do some work in the darkroom. I took a photo class in high school and I really enjoy the physical act of exposing the pictures. And I might want to write for the school paper, as well.