Patriot runners eye big year after titles in opener

By Bill Althaus
Truman's Josh Nunn runs to a victory in the Independence City Championship. The Patriots took five of the top 10 spots to claim the team title, and the girls team made it a sweep.

On the first day of school at Truman, Jack Getman was thrilled to be back in the classroom.

But what really got the junior cross country standout pumped was the 2020 season, which he believes could be one of the Patriots’ most successful in recent history.

“I just know we’re going to do well at the City Championship and I hope we use that success to gain some momentum and use that to carry us through the whole season,” Getman said.

He made those comments without a crystal ball or Tarot cards, but he was spot on as the Truman boys claimed five of the top 10 spots to win the City Championship title.

Josh Nunn was first in 11 minutes, 8.8 seconds, Getman took second with a time of 11:23.6 and John Crump III was third in 11:36.0.

Rounding out the top 10 were Caleb Nunn, who was seventh (12:22.6) and Kolby Cook, who was ninth (12:49.2). Myles McConnell finished 15th (13:28.0).

“Watching the team prepare for the first meet I was actually shocked at how good we are and what type of potential we have,” Getman said after the City Championship. “I’ve never been on a team at Truman that’s like this one. We’re all brothers, we care about each other, we love to push each other at practice and when we’re competing, and that all comes from our coach.”

He’s talking about Marcus Summers, who is invigorating the cross country culture at Truman.

“This group is special – as runners and as individuals,” Summers said. “I can’t wait to see what they accomplish this season.”

The same thing could be said for the girls, who also swept the top three spots at the City Championship and also brought home the crown. Freshman Jayda Cisco won in a time of 14:30.5, followed by Molly McClung (15:01.4) and Jewelia Nichol (15:03.8).

Taylor Herrick finished 13th (18:02.5), Samantha Stone 15th (18:38.1), Gabby Muller 18th (19:33.8) and Ava Martin 20th (21.42.3).

“I love this team,” said junior captain Jewelia Nichol, who shares Getman’s passion for her teammates. “We all thought we had a good chance of winning the City Championship and when we did, it was such a boost for our team’s confidence.

“I agree with what Jack said about the team, because this is the closest girls team I’ve ever been a part of, and we are all so thankful that we get to compete and be back in school and see each other.”

All the distractions this summer simply made Josh Nunn, who won the City Championship, more determined to be ready if there was going to be a cross country season.

“Will we have school? Will we have a cross country season?” Nunn asked. “Those were the questions everyone was asking, and I just thought, ‘I’m going to be ready for whatever happens.

“So I ran on my own, I ran with my teammates and I dedicated myself to having the best senior season I could possibly have. Winning that first meet proves to me that all our hard work is going to pay off this season.”

Summers said he believes in helping his runners become better individuals, not just better runners.

“Our No. 1 goal every year is to have a team GPA of 3.5 or better and we did that last year and hope to do it again this year,” he said. “And you can see how much fun both teams have running together and working out together.

“When you care about who you’re running with, it just makes you work that much harder and these two teams are really working hard.”