He’s back!

Harrison blasts out of the gate to win first race of his senior year


After about three weeks off, Kashon Harrison is back to his old ways.

Special to the Times | Adron Gardner
Kirtland Central Bronco Kashon Harrison nears the finish line in first place in the varsity boys’ 5K race during the University of New Mexico Lobo Invitational cross country meet at the UNM North Golf Course in Albuquerque Sept. Harrison won the boys’ race with a time of 15:47.10.

The Kirtland Central High School senior finished first by nearly half a minute at the University of New Mexico cross country meet.

Harrison said he’s had little time to put work in but things are off to a great start.

“This actually is good start,” he said. “I took a little bit of a break for about half a month or three weeks or so, but after that it’s hard to get back. You just get the motivation to try and keep that training up there.”

Harrison finished the race in 15:47.1, ahead of Los Alamos’ Steven Strevell, junior, who finished second in 16:16.4. Cleveland’s Yonas Haile finished third in 16:16.18.6.

Harrison got out to a typical, strong start out in front of the pack, taking an early lead. He led a small pack of runners until about a mile in, when Strevell said he started to notice Harrison take his leap.

He said he hoped to stay close to Harrison but had to face the reality that there might be a point where Harrison would make his move.

“I knew Yonas and Kashon were here and I know they were completely out of my league, or I thought they were, but I kind of wanted to go gung-ho in; just everything in, and try to stick as close to them as I could,” Strevell said. “Kashon Harrison, he kind of took away at the 1K mark, so he kind of just took off and went behind the buggy cart. It was kind of just like a turning moment for me, like ‘well he’s gone now, I don’t think I can keep that up …’ and just focus on my race and not focus on him and beat him.”

From that point, Harrison’s lead began to grow.

He said he wasn’t sure when he broke off from the rest, but that he was sure that he was well prepared to do so.

“I was just trying to find the motivation,” he said. “I went to a NAU (Northern Arizona University) camp around July 20th. It kind of motivated me to do high miles, which is 50 miles per week, so it’s just how everyone’s training, watching them stretch, which helped me better prepare myself to see how I can try to be.”

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Categories: Track & Field

About Author

Sunnie R. Clahchischiligi

Sunnie Clahchischiligi has been the sports writer for the Navajo Times since 2008. She has a bachelor’s degree in print journalism from the University of New Mexico. Before joining the Times, she worked at the St. Cloud Times (Minn.), the Albuquerque Journal, the Santa Fe New Mexican, Sports Illustrated Magazine in New York City and the Salt Lake Tribune. She can be reached at sunnie@navajotimes.com or via cell at (505) 686-0769.