Prep Profile: Tess Leibham

Prep Profile: Tess Leibham

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Prep Profile: Tess Leibham

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Sports Tess competes in

Cross country and track and field

Tess’ week

Tess Leibham — who narrowly missed going to State as a freshman and sophomore after battling foot and knee injuries — advanced to the state cross country championship meet for the first time after taking fourth place in a Division 3 sectional last week.

All-time individual achievement

Going to State this year in cross country, and to State last year in track

No. 1 athletic goal

“To be the best I can and to make sure that I give 100 percent”

Coach Jeff Jurss’ thoughts

“Tess came in as a freshman with not a whole lot of experience running, and she kept getting better and better throughout the season; when it came down to the end, she missed going to State by one spot — broke her foot, then she hurt her knee playing basketball. And her sophomore year, she came back and, six months after having ACL surgery, she started practicing and kept getting better and better, and came down to the sectional meet — she was sixth again, missed (going to State) by 1 second. … And this summer she worked really hard, came into the season in great shape and she’s been at an elite level all season long. Just keeps getting better and faster, and she’s going to do great (at State) on Saturday, I’m sure.”

Tess’ thoughts

“We’ve trained hard all season to peak at the right meets and to peak at the most important meets, and I think we’ve been training really hard and I’ve been training really hard to do my best and I think that I’ve been having a better season than any other season, and I’m very blessed to have my coach and both boys and girls teams to help push me to do my best. … My freshman year I missed (going to State) by one place, and it was because I had a broken foot. And then I tore my ACL that year and had surgery that spring. So coming back was really hard, and I knew I was going to have to work really hard, but I wanted to put the time and the effort in because I did want to have a good cross country season this year and hopefully next year too. So it was a long road, but I feel like I’ve come a long way since my freshman and sophomore year.

Your favorites

* Sport: Cross country

* Pro/college athlete: Gabrielle Anzalone, UW-Madison cross country runner

* Pro/college team: Wisconsin Badgers

* Musical artist or group: Keith Urban

* Song of all time: “Wagon Wheel”

* TV show: “Friends”

* Movie: “Bridesmaids”

* Class: Chemistry

* Food: Peanut butter

* Saying or piece of advice: “The only person you should try to be better than is the person that you were yesterday.”

* Hobby: Running

What if …

* You could be any celebrity on earth for a week. Who would it be? Jennifer Lawrence of Katniss Everdeen

* You could listen to a song minutes before the biggest athletic event of your life to get you hyped. What would it be? “Wagon Wheel”

* You could meet one famous person, a non-athlete, who would it be? Channing Tatum

Quick Q&A

* Who inspires you most? My parents or my coach

* What is your dream vacation destination? Italy

* Who’s the toughest opponent you have ever faced (be specific)? Becca Gosselin of Living Word Lutheran, or Delaney Sinnen of Random Lake

* What’s your No. 1 pet peeve? “When people don’t try their hardest.”

* What do you want to do for a living? Work as a teacher or nurse

* Why are sports important to you? “Because they let me get away from my normal routine of school, and they let me use my God-given abilities to the best.”

* Which Facebook friend has the most interesting status updates and best photos? Hannah Barrow

* What’s your strength as a person? “I think I’m driven, or determined.”

* What do you still need to work on? “Being confident in my abilities.”

* Do you have any pre-game or pre-meet rituals? “I eat a banana five minutes before I run.”

* Top person you follow, or would follow, on Twitter? Cross country coach Jeff Jurss

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Prep Profile: Tess Leibham

Cross country and track and field

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