Cross country may seem like an individual sport, but for Logan Goodman ’23 it was the team component that drew him. After starting out his high school career playing soccer and basketball, Goodman’s sports focus changed during COVID. His success in cross country culminated in a fantastic senior season in 2022 that included the team finishing fifth at state and Goodman receiving several individual post-season accolades.
In addition to the PRA team finishing fifth at state, Goodman finished 10th overall in what he described as a bad race for him after taking both the Metro League and regional titles for the season. Post-season recognition included boys Metro League Player of the Year and Senior of the Year, All-State Second Team, Academic All-State First Team, and Metro League First Team.
“It was my best season by far,” Goodman said. “I started to take running more seriously after my junior cross country season because I knew I wanted to run in college. I tried harder and ran more miles coming into senior season and it paid off.”
Goodman was all set to try track during his freshman year in the spring of 2020 when the season was canceled because of the COVID pandemic. When the pandemic altered the sports seasons during his sophomore year, creating four seasons and moving soccer to spring, the cross country coach reached out to Goodman asking if he would consider running that fall. He agreed and recruited some of his teammates from the soccer team to run with him. By the end of the season, the team was going to state and Goodman liked running more than soccer or basketball.
“I had the opportunity to run on the varsity team as an underclassman and after going to state my first season, I felt the team had a lot of promise since we were returning a lot of our team roster,” Goodman said.
Mary Marr, PRA cross country coach, said after a strong first season Goodman caught the “running bug,” even though he was initially a bit hesitant to give cross country a try. “He has been an asset to the team since day one,” she said.
“Not only was he running well and winning races, but he was helping define a new culture for the boys team,” she said. “They were setting higher expectations for themselves around training, racing, and believing they could be one of the top teams in the state. Logan helped inspire this in the boys team.”
After playing four sports during his COVID-impacted sophomore year, Goodman committed to cross country and track for the last two years of high school. During a normal three-season school year of sports, soccer and cross country both compete in the fall. While basketball and track don’t conflict, Goodman said he quit basketball so he could commit to winter training in the off season. He served as captain of the cross country team both his junior and senior seasons.
“I liked the team culture of cross country,” he said. “The teammates I asked to join me on the cross country team were really just acquaintances at the time. Cross country brought me closer to a lot of people that I didn’t think I would be friends with. I’ve made some of my best friends on the cross country team.”
Despite his individual successes, Goodman was focused on the team and state for his senior season. He considers his success at leagues and regionals as just “a victory lap.” And while his state meet didn’t go as he hoped it would, Goodman hasn’t let that cast a shadow on his senior season.
“There is always another opportunity,” he said. “The state meet was a bad day for me. I didn’t feel great before, during, or after the race. In fact, after the race I was in the medical tent.”
That outlook on his state meet is the advice he said he would give the PRA runners on next year’s cross country team. “Don’t let one race define you,” he said. “If it’s a bad race, come back and race the next one like it’s a normal race. If you dwell on a bad race, that low confidence will result in another bad race.”
Goodman’s next cross country opportunity will be at Marquette University, where he will run cross country and track next year. Goodman plans to study exercise physiology with the hopes of becoming a physical therapist. Knowing the importance that sports have played in his life, he wants to help athletes get back to 100 percent as quickly as possible.
Marr said she is proud of Goodman and happy that his hard work paid off with an amazing senior cross country season and what she anticipates to be a stronger track season this spring.
“Logan’s best running years are still ahead,” she said. “I know he is going to thrive in the college running environment and I am excited to cheer him on as he takes on this new challenge.”
By Amy G. Partain
PRA Communications Manager