Coast Union High School cross country coaches Jim Hurley and Ayen Johnson have announced player awards for the 2015 season, and sophomore Paul Butterfield received the Most Valuable Award, while Nic Roper and Iveth De Jesus both received Coach’s Awards.
Hurley said that in the past year, Butterfield has “figured out the sport.” Last year, Butterfield ran, Hurley explained, but this year he “learned how to race a little bit.
“He has always run very hard, but this year he learned to run from up front.” This year, he ran two to three minutes faster than he did last year on the same courses, Hurley noted.
One lesson Butterfield still needs to learn, his coach said, is to leave a little energy for that last push as you near the finish line.
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“He likes to mix it up with the boys up in front, and a couple times he paid the price,” Hurley explained. In the Cal Poly Invitational, against the biggest schools in the county, “he went out hard and got tired at the end,” the coach pointed out, although he led the team to a second-place finish in Division 5.
Roper, a junior, was “very consistent, very positive with good energy,” Hurley said. “He was a real asset with his positive attitude and always gave 110 percent. It is nice to have a runner who was consistent his freshman, sophomore and junior years.”
As for the other winner of the Coach’s Award, Iveth De Jesus, Hurley said she is “a very nice young lady, soft-spoken, and she also played club soccer. She would run with the cross country team at a Saturday meet in the morning and play club soccer that afternoon.
“She might have had some knee issues, or some shin issues, but she never complained; she just showed up every day,” Hurley recalled. “She is the kind of kid you wish you had 10 more of.”