The Plattsburgh State cross-country team has seen a tremendous amount of success this season. Although the veterans of the team have shown great talent, there has been one fresh face in particular that has been leading the pack: Jeriqho Gadway.
Gadway, a Plattsburgh native, caught the attention of PSUC head coach Andrew Krug in the early stages of his high school career at Plattsburgh High School. The recruitment process started as early as Gadway’s sophomore year, and after he qualified for the Footlocker Nationals Race, it was clear that the Cards would be lucky to pick him up.
“It was a very long recruiting process,” Krug said. “We’re just very happy to have him here, and we are very happy that everything worked out.”
Krug is not the only one content with how everything turned out. Gadway feels fortunate to be so close to home and feels that being so comfortable with the environment around him is beneficial to his work ethic.
“It makes me feel like I really know what I’m doing here, and I like that,” Gadway said.
Being close to home seems to definitely working in Gadway’s favor. The exceptional freshman came out of the Pre-SUNYAC 8K with the fastest time amongst his teammates: 27:27.8. This stunning time earned him third in the race overall.
Fellow freshman Matt Jenkins was the closest of the Cards to catching Gadway during this race, finishing ninth overall, with a time of 27:51.6. Seeing both Gadway and Jenkins in close proximity to each other is not an unfamiliar sight though. The duo has been known to be very competitive during practice, always pushing one another to get better.
“During the workouts, I push him, and he pushes me,” Jenkins said. “We run the same pace during practice, and he really motivates me to keep up.”
This motivation Jenkins refers to has influenced the whole team, and it was especially evident in their third place finish as a team at the Pre-SUNYAC 8K. The team hopes to take the energy it had in this particular race and have it carry over into its post-season endeavors. Gadway also has his own personal beliefs of what it will take to get the job done.
“It’s going to take a lot of focus and dedication,” Gadway said. “It’s nice to know that I have my teammates to push me to my maximum potential.”
Even though Gadway has put in many hours to his running, his teammates and coaches describe him as an easy-going kid who just likes to have fun.
Despite being in his first year of college racing, the coaching staff has prestigious expectations for Gadway.
“I think there’s a lot of untapped potential for him,” Krug said. “I’m excited to see what he does in these bigger races, and we’re ultimately looking to put him in the Plattsburgh State record books and, maybe down the road, into the Hall of Fame.”
Email Kevin Morley at firstname.lastname@example.org