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Freshman sets the pace for Millers cross country

Max Marler has been a consistent pacesetter for the Millers this season, which continued Thursday when Yukon traveled to Moore for the annual Lions Cross Country Invitational. Photo / Michael Kinney

Max Marler is a young man of very few words. But, luckily for him, this season he has let his times on the cross-country courses speak for him.
The Yukon High freshman has been a consistent pacesetter for the Millers this season, and that continued Thursday when Yukon traveled to Moore for the annual Lions Cross Country Invitational.
“I felt pretty good towards the beginning,” Marler said, “I definitely ran faster than I thought I would.”
The 5k race was held on the grounds of the First Moore Baptist Church.
It featured some long hills and curves. Yet, Marler was still able to hit his target point.
“I kind of wanted to get near the low 18s,” Marler said. “That’s what I was going for. I ran an 18:00 flat.”
Marler’s performance in Moore was a continuation of his growth during this early part of the cross-country season.
Last week he placed 11th at Choctaw, and he was in the top 25 at the Putnam City North Invite the week before that.
“Max is consistently getting better,” Yukon coach Matt Parent said last week. “I’m excited by his potential.  He is going to be a good runner for us.”
Marler’s success even caught him off-guard.
“I have been running a lot better than I expected this season,” Marler said. “I thought when I came in I was going to be a whole new animal. But it just kind of felt natural to me.  It’s a good feeling.”
Marler said part of that is due to just getting a better feeling for what type of runner he is.
“I definitely feel like I know what I am doing a lot more than last year,” Marler said. “I feel more comfortable.”
There is still a month left before the postseason starts. By then, Marler has some high goals he has set for himself.
“By the end of the season, I hopefully want to see low 17s, 17:30,” Marler said. “That’s what I am aiming for.”
Marler said the key to reaching that goal is simple.
“Just working hard and trying to get better every meet,” Marler said. “Preparing good, eating good and drinking lots of water.”

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