Highland Cross Country Runner Invited To Australia

I recently spoke with one of Highland High School’s talented multi-sport athletes.

“My name is Jake Johnson and I’m a junior at Highland High School. I participate in basketball, track, cross country, and baseball. I’d have to say my favorite is basketball.”

While basketball may be Jake’s favorite sport, he has recently been receiving attention and accolades for his cross country accomplishments.

“Led by my coach Mike Warf, I placed seventh in the district, 22nd in the regionals, and 65th in the state with my best time of 19:17. I hope on receiving a scholarship to run cross country in college.”

Those accomplishments have led to a unique opportunity.

“It led to being invited to Australia this summer. The trip will be taking place from June 28th to July 8th. On my trip to Australia, I’ll be participating in two different events. The first one will be the All American Five K Race and the second will be the Gold Coast Marathon.”

While Jake is obviously a world class runner, his abilities might be tested by running under water to get to a different continent. And while competing in cross country is a solo sport, he could use some teamwork now.

“I’ve been asked to raise $5,000 by May 15th. It will cover the hotel, two meals a day, it’ll cover my plane ticket, and uniforms for all the races.”

He has already worked towards reaching his goal.

“So far, I had a table set up at the Maple Festival, asking for donations. I’ve went and visited all the Ruritan clubs, just about.

“If anyone would like to donate, you can go to www.downundersports.com/payment/UVZ-CFV , and I also have a link on my Facebook page.”

Story By

Scott Smith

Scott Smith is the General Manager for Allegheny Mountain Radio and Station Coordinator and News Reporter for WVLS. Scott’s family has deep roots in Highland County. While he did not grow up here, he spent as much time as possible on the family farm, and eventually moved to Highland to continue the tradition, which he still pursues with his cousin. Unfortunately, farming doesn’t pay all the bills, so he has previously taken other jobs to support his farming hobby, including pressman/writer for The Recorder, and Ag Projects Coordinator for The Highland Center. He lives in Hightown with wife Michelle and son Ethan. In his spare time, he wishes he had more spare time, especially to ride his prized Harley-Davidson motorcycle. scott@amrmail.org

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