Prep Sports

Xavier's Madelynn Dake and Mary Clare Bean pushed each other in cross country

HS journalism: Lifelong friends gave running a shot this fall

(Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)
(Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)

CEDAR RAPIDS — Madelynn Dake and Mary Clare Bean were new additions to the Xavier girls’ cross country team this fall.

They have been best friends since birth. Their moms were friends before the two were born, so they grew up together.

Running on the cross country team was a new experience this fall.

“We both started cross country this year, and running with Maddo (Dake’s nickname) makes the practices so much more bearable,” Bean said. “We can talk about a bunch of things and it has been a great way to become closer.”

Dake and Bean always were together during meets, practices and, of course, spent a lot of time together outside of practice and school.

“Her personality just matches mine so well,” Dake said. “Sometimes you have friends that don’t have the same sense of humor or interests as you, but ours are pretty much the same.

“She makes me laugh, and I know that if I need her she’ll always be there for me.”

Running cross country meant a lot to the both.

“Cross county has become something really special to me, and I’m so happy I get to share it with her,” Dake said.

Xavier senior Megan Meyer said having friends on the team is important.

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“Running with your best friend helps with performance because you push each other to get better and when one person isn’t pushing themselves, the other motivates them to keep going,” she said. “This is hard to do when you run alone.”

The high school cross country season ended Saturday at the state meet in Fort Dodge.

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