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Turlock Christian revives cross country
tc country
Egan Farrar, Sadie Roos and Brooke Rodrigues will be the varsity cross country runners for Turlock Christian and they will also be competing in the Central California Athletic Alliance for the first year. - photo by CANDY PADILLA/The Journal

The Turlock Christian Eagles have announced that they will start up a cross country program for the 2014 fall season.

Jan Murphy, the new head coach, has recently coached in Miami and in Oregon prior to that.

“My forte is being part of a starter program and getting kids excited,” said Murphy. “Last year was my first year as a coach at a school in Miami and I took the team to the state tournament and it’s just commitment, dedication and letting these kids know what they need to know in order to be successful.”

Murphy brings over 31 years of experience with track and cross country after competing at the Division I level as a part of the Oregon State Beavers cross country program.

The Eagles will be competing in the new Central California Athletic Alliance after the league decided to bring in cross country into the sports mix.

“The conference we are in, they decided to add cross country so the school decided they will add it and recruited me to come out and coach,” said Murphy.

Everything occurred so quickly that Murphy only had limited time to assemble her squad and they are currently only in their first week of training.

“Many programs have been going on since June or July, were just getting started and up and running this week,” Murphy said. “So it will take a couple weeks to get in shape, but then they will see what it’s like in a few weeks.”

With a new program questions will always be asked but Murphy has embraced it as a fresh beginning.

“We had a parent meeting on Monday night and I told them that it’s a building program and the conference we’re in is also new,” she said. “So a lot of the teams are small just like us so we’re not going against a team with 30 plus students. It’s new with everybody.”

Egan Farrar, who also plays varsity basketball, will be one of the founding runners for the program.

Farrar will be the lone senior and lone boy competing at the varsity level but his athleticism has already surprised and intrigued Murphy.

“Egan is athletic and I told them all that their first race will be one where they just finish because they don’t know what it feels like because we just started,” Murphy said.

Sadie Roos and Brooke Rodrigues, both of whom are juniors will anchor the girl’s side.

“I expect our group throughout the season for their times to come down because they are talented and committed and working in this hot weather,” said Murphy. “These bunch are the role models for the future team and that’s what I tell them.”

Murphy is also closely working with their middle school program and should see drastic developments as the years progress she added.

“Well I can kind of see the big picture and I know for them it can be frustrating but I feel it’s a book where I see where we are going and we will be fine, it just takes about four years,” Murphy said.

The first meet is scheduled for Sept. 8 against an opponent yet to be determined.