Messenger closes season at state

By Reece Waddell | Published Wednesday, November 7, 2018
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Paradise sophomore Jana Messenger set a goal for herself before the 2018 cross country season started: end the year in Round Rock at the state meet.

CLOSING STRONG – Paradise’s Jana Messenger fights for position in the 3A race. She took 48th. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

Saturday at Old Settlers Park, Messenger realized her dream.

After spending most of her freshman season rehabbing a fractured ankle, Messenger came back this year stronger than ever. She helped lead the Lady Panthers to a District 7-3A title, and a few weeks later, finished 48th in the 3A girls 3,200, clocking a 12:53.36.

“This is what all those early mornings have been for,” Messenger said. “I just wanted to leave my guts on the course and pass as many people as I could.”

Messenger was the only runner from Paradise to qualify for state, and said she dedicated the race to her teammates, friends and family.

“All through this season, we always said we aren’t running for ourselves, we’re running for others,” Messenger said. “To be able to tell my teammates and everybody at home ‘I did this for y’all and for the people who couldn’t’, it means a lot.”

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