Veilleux, Soroco girls place sixth |

Veilleux, Soroco girls place sixth

It was a struggle Saturday for Soroco junior Chloe Veilleux to sum up her feelings.

There was an air of disappointment with her after she placed sixth in the Class 2A state cross country meet in Colorado Springs.

That's purely a result of her success at that same event a year ago, when she won the state championship.

There was also a sense of pride. After a rough year in which she battled persistent minor injuries, after dealing with all the expectations that came with that championship, she ran hard in her last race of the season.

"You can't always have your best season, but I did the best I could, so I can't be too disappointed," she said. "I'm not overly happy, but I'm not sad."

Veilleux finished her race in 19 minutes, 51.8 seconds, just four seconds off her time in the same event a year ago.

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That led the way for a sixth-place overall finish by the Soroco girls team in what was its first group trip to the state championship.

Veilleux won her title a year ago with a late-race surge. She was sprinting again this year as she neared the finish line, entering the stadium in seventh but running to sixth.

"I didn't hold back," she said.

Charlee Veilleux, a senior, was 35th for Soroco with a time of 22:18.8.

"It was the strongest I've felt all season," Charlee Veilleux said.

Sophomore Kourtney Bruner was 56th in 23:13.3, and senior Mattie Rossi was 63rd with a time of 23:27.8.

"This year it felt a lot easier. Last year, I had no idea what I was doing," said Bruner, a sophomore running at state for the second year.

For Charlee Veilleux and Rossi, the state meet capped what was a short but, they said, delicious cross country career.

Both played volleyball for the first three years in school but were drawn to cross country this season. Rossi saw it as an ideal step for her favorite sport, track and field. Veilleux saw the fun her sister and other friends had on the team.

"I've never done training like this ever in my life," Rossi said. Coach Callie Bradley “would drive us out and drop us off eight miles from school and say, 'I'll meet you back at school.' I'd never run six miles, let alone eight, and then you’re putting in intervals and workouts. It's a whole new work of training."

"No regrets," Charlee Veilleux said.

"It was the best decision I ever made," Rossi added.

To reach Joel Reichenberger, call 970-871-4253, email or follow him on Twitter @JReich9.

Class 2A girls cross country state championship results

1. Helen Cross, Nederland, 18:52.0

2. Soliel Gaylord, Telluride, 19:09.0

3. Sarah Davidson, Nederland, 19:29.8

6. Chloe Veilleux, Soroco, 19:51.8

35. Charlee Veilleux, Soroco, 22:18.8

56. Kourtney Bruner, Soroco, 23:13.3

63. Mattie Rossi, Soroco, 23:27.8