As a teacher and a coach, I believe so many lessons are learned while running. The Hotchkiss course is a scenic one, winding its way through our leafy campus and overlooking beautiful Lake Wononscopomuc. Our program fosters self-improvement, mental acuity, and above all, team commitment. Our coaches work to instill a team-first attitude that is easily applied to our daily lives in the classroom, in our community, and beyond. We also hope to instill a love of running, so the individual may continue to enjoy running later in life.
It is an exciting time for our school and our cross-country program. We have an enthusiastic group of runners with a range of abilities, and we hope that you will become a part of our running family and will contribute to our future success.
-- Kira Shaikh, Head Coach, Girls Varsity Cross Country
The girls cross country program has enjoyed both individual and team successes in the recent past. The Bearcats have finished with a winning dual-meet record in four of the last five seasons, and have finished third or better at Founders in four seasons as well. On an individual level, Carlota Corbella Alcantara '15 was the Founders League and New England champion in the 2014-2015 season.
Our cross-country course overlooks picturesque Lake Wononscopomuc in Lakeville, Connecticut. Due to rolling hills and not so rolling hills, ours is one of the more challenging courses in New England. It is a spike-friendly course, run mostly on the grassy golf course with a small section on asphalt.
Coach Shaikh has not only focused on running cross-country through her educational career, but also enjoyed a standout softball career at Bates College. After devoting her time to collegiate softball, Coach Shaikh ran straight back into her love for running by competing in eight marathons within three years, three of which she ran within five weeks of each other. While running the Boston Marathon in 2019, Coach Shaikh raised over $10,000 for Dream Big, a non-profit organization that empowers young females through athletics.
Throughout her time, Coach Shaikh has coached successful cross country and softball teams both in public and private boarding schools within New England. Herher boys’ varsity cross-country team earned fourth place in the 2019 NEPSTA DIII Cross Country Championships. With strong backgrounds in two extremely different sports, Coach Shaikh brings a well-rounded perspective to what it means to be a student-athlete and competitive, team player. She hopes to share this balance with Hotchkiss students as well as continue to challenge them to achieve more than what they may initially believe.
Mary Brunelli '08 -- Williams
Dylan Alles '12 -- Colby
Anna Balderston '14 -- Claremont McKenna
Sami Glass '14 -- Yale
Carlota Corbella Alcantara '15 -- Princeton
Maisie Thomas '15 -- Whitman College
Annabelle Burns '18 -- Chicago
Grace Bristow '18 -- Wash. U. in St. Louis