by NICK ALVARADO//Editorial Assistant

Long distance running for any athlete can be challenging.

For Kassidi Jones, it has built toughness, both mentally and physically.

“I believe that running is mental,” said Jones, a sophomore on the South Plains College track team. “It’s 90 percent mental, and if you can overcome through your mind, you can be the best. I don’t know what really got me into it, just motivation and wanting to be the best and win, anywhere I go.”

Jones says that it was “weird” getting involved in long-distance running events, also stating that she has been “super competitive.”

“I started weird,” Jones said. “I’ve always have been super competitive my whole life. I started running in high school as a freshman, and I was good at it.”

Before she was a runner, Jones was taking part in rodeo events in her hometown of Bangs, which is located 15 minutes west of Brownwood.

“My parents used to always have me in rodeo,” Jones said. “I used to train my own horses and go to the big rodeos. It was real expensive and we had to stop doing that, and my horse got pregnant. There was no way I could have done it in college anyway.”

While at Bangs High School, Jones competed in the mile and two-mile run. Now, she participates in longer events.

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“I do the 3,000-meter steeplechase, the 1,500-meter run, the 5,000-meter run, 10,000-meter run,” Jones said. “It’s really just whatever Coach (Chris Beene) put me in.”

Jones has been struggling with injury, limiting her chances to get a personal record. She is currently recovering and hoped to set foot on the track for the outdoor season with her first meet last weekend being at Abilene Christian University.

“I’ve been struggling with an injury, so I haven’t been practicing,” Jones said. “I just go to the meets and run.”

Her plans for the future involve transferring to a NCAA Division I University and continue to compete in track.

She added that she will be looking to head out-of-state to transfer.

“I’m looking into Oklahoma University or Florida University.” Jones said.

Outside of track, Jones likes to hangout with her track friends and they have become like a family.

“We go to Lubbock and do whatever,” Jones said.

Jones added that she is lucky to be a part of a national championship track team at SPC.

“I’m very lucky to be here,” Jones said. “Everybody on the track team is very lucky to be here, since we are a national champion team. We really are the best in the nation at the junior college level. It’s really such an honor to be a national champion. This program is the best.”

Posted by Plainsman Press Staff

The student newspaper of South Plains College.

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