CORTLAND, Ohio (WKBN) – Once you start racking up state titles like Maplewood cross county & track star Caleigh Richards, it can become hard to keep count sometimes.
“Uh, three, or no four, four sorry,” Maplewood junior Caleigh Richards said. “For cross country, I have two state championships and in track, I have the 1600 and the 3200.”
There aren’t many junior runners who have that type of resume already, taking first at the state cross country meets her freshman and sophomore seasons, while also doubling up in track, while setting school records for the 1600 and 3200 in Columbus.
“I never would’ve thought coming in as a freshman that I would accomplish this much, but it’s cool that I get to bring a legacy here and be an example for the other girls to come up,” Richards said. “Just showing that if you set goals anything is possible. If you put the work in, you can achieve those goals.”
The craziest part might be that Caleigh still has this track season and then another whole year of cross country and track before graduating in 2024.
“Knowing I have another senior year is just crazy to think about knowing I can accomplish so much more, and I’m just so grateful for all the talents I’ve been blessed with,” Richards said.
But despite all the success, this four-time state champion says no matter how many wins you get, in this sport, it’s always a race against the clock.
“You can always set a higher goal for yourself, not just always worried about winning, but try to reach your personal goals and try to work on bettering yourself,” Richards said.
On top of setting records, Richards shattered three different Maplewood girls marks, including the 5k (18:05.8), by well over a minute and the 1600 meters (4:57.41) and 3200 meters (10:42.82) by more than 20 seconds each.