GIRLS CROSS COUNTRY | Season Preview

Bloom's Narcisi sets sights on state after missing out in 2012

2013-08-27T18:00:00Z 2013-08-28T02:20:04Z Bloom's Narcisi sets sights on state after missing out in 2012Kenny Karrson Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
August 27, 2013 6:00 pm  • 

In the 1960s TV sitcom, "Get Smart," secret agent Maxwell Smart would utter his now-famous catchphrase, "Missed it by that much," whenever he came up shy on some job-related task.

The same statement could also describe Bloom Township senior runner Gina Narcisi's performance at last season's Class 3A sectional cross country meet.

In that particular race, Narcisi was the highest local finisher, placing 34th in a time of 19 minutes, 29 seconds. As credible as that showing was, though, it still left her three positions short of grabbing the final state-qualifying spot.

An identical situation had occurred for another Blazing Trojans runner five years earlier, when Janina Roche — then a Bloom sophomore who is now competing for Olivet Nazarene University — also missed out on a trip to Peoria by three places. Roche bounced back to become a state qualifier as a junior.

Narcisi hopes to follow a similar path to glory this fall. To her credit, she made no excuses for last season's near miss.

"I overlooked and over analyzed things, so I wasn't prepared going in," Narcisi said. "But then (after the race), I realized every little second counts."

Learning experiences have been a part of Narcisi's competitive running career since the beginning, which surprisingly was only four years ago. She participated in cross country as a freshman largely because she viewed it as a good way to prepare for soccer in the spring.

Narcisi said finishing the three-mile events was initially a great challenge, but one issue that never presented itself was stopping during the races.

"Running requires heart and I learned that (quickly)," she said. "I knew if I was stopping, I was giving up, so I've always put it in my mind to keep going."

Narcisi eventually developed a passion for running, which prompted her to quit soccer this past spring and join Bloom's track team. Her inaugural season included a mixture of highs and lows — while she won the 1,600- and 3,200-meter runs at the Southland Athletic Conference meet, she missed state qualification in the longer race by just one spot and 17 seconds.

Despite Narcisi's failure to advance to Charleston, Bloom's boys' track coach Andrew Schmitt feels she can take the momentum gained on the track and carry it over to cross country courses this fall.

"Gina's made lots of improvements in running and competing," said Schmitt, who has also taken over for Huey Johnson as boss of both of the Blazing Trojans' cross country squads. "She's been learning about pace and being a winner. She can also be more cerebral in her races (now in terms of) planning for them."

Narcisi agrees with her coach's opinion that her track successes and the knowledge she acquired while competing in that sport will pay dividends as the fall progresses. Her main goal, in addition to qualifying for state, is to break 19 minutes.

"I learned (in track) that I have the capacity to do it," Narcisi said. "We trained hard (during the spring) and I'm learning how to work and hurt and be successful.

"Track requires toughness, and I hope to take that into the new cross country season."

Copyright 2014 nwitimes.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Follow The Times

Fan Poll

Loading…

Which school has the area's best baseball team?

View Results

Follow your school

Duneland Conference

Chesterton Trojans
News
Crown Point Bulldogs
News
Lake Central Indians
News
LaPorte Slicers
News
Merrillville Pirates
News
Michigan City Wolves
News
Portage Indians
News
Valparaiso Vikings
News

Greater South Shore Conference

Bishop Noll Warriors
News
Calumet Warriors
News
Lake Station Eagles
News
Michigan City Marquette Blazers
News
North Newton Spartans
News
River Forest Ingots
News
Wheeler Bearcats
News
Whiting Oilers
News

Great Lakes Athletic Conference

Clark Pioneers
News
Gavit Gladiators
News
Hammond Wildcats
News
Morton Governors
News

Hoosier Conference

Rensselaer Bombers
News

Northwest Crossroads Conference

Andrean 59ers
News
Griffith Panthers
News
Highland Trojans
News
Hobart Brickies
News
Kankakee Valley Kougars
News
Lowell Red Devils
News
Munster Mustangs
News

Northwestern Conference

Lew Wallace Hornets
News
Roosevelt Panthers
News
West Side Cougars
News

Porter County Conference

Boone Grove Wolves
News
Hanover Central Wildcats
News
Hebron Hawks
News
Kouts Mustangs/Fillies
News
LaCrosse Tigers
News
Morgan Twp. Cherokees
News
South Central Satellites
News
Washington Twp. Senators
News
Westville Blackhawks
News

Independents

Bowman Academy Eagles
News
Calumet Christian
News
Campagna Academy
News
Covenant Christian Knights
News
E.C. Central Cardinals
News
Hammond Baptist Swordsman
News
Luther East Eagles
News

Chicago Catholic League

Mt. Carmel Caravan
News
Seton Academy Sting
News
St. Francis deSales Pioneers
News

Chicago Public League

Washington Minutemen/Minutewomen
News

East Suburban Catholic

Marian Catholic Spartans
News

Metro Suburban

Illiana Christian Vikings
News

River Valley Conference

Beecher Bobcats/Ladycats
News
Illinios Lutheran Chargers
News

South Suburban Blue

T.F. North Meteors
News
T.F. South Rebels
News

Southland Athletic Conference

Bloom Twp. Blazin' Trojans
News
Crete-Monee Warriors
News

SouthWest Suburban Blue

Homewood-Flossmoor Vikings
News

SouthWest Suburban Red

Thornridge Falcons
News
Thornton Wildcats
News
Thornwood Thunderbirds
News

Latest Local Offers

Featured Businesses