Carson Strom first experienced running in a big-time race not long after he turned 10 in Charleston.
He finished the Cooper River Bridge Run's 10-kilometer course in less than an hour.
"I remember my parents telling me, 'Just try to finish. If you have to stop and walk for a bit, you can. Just try to finish,'" Strom said.
That let his parents know maybe he had some potential on the course.
They turned out to be right, as the Greenwood High School senior is the Lakelands Boys Cross-Country Runner of the Year. He ran No. 1 all year for the Eagles with his best five-kilometer time being 16 minutes, 40 seconds. He was honored as All-Region 1-AAAA, and qualified for the state meet.
"They key was just hard work, like always," said Strom, who ran for the Eagles since his seventh-grade year. "I worked all summer long and that hard work continued all through the season. It all came together."
Not only did Strom have a solid year on the course, but also one in terms of leadership.
"Since I was a senior, and one of the older ones on the team, I definitely felt I had to exhibit a stronger sense of leadership," Strom said. "It was a responsibility I focused on more this year than in the past. I tried to help motivate as many guys as I could, and really encourage them. Encouraging my teammates was just as important to me as trying to win a race."
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