BY KEVIN WOODRUFF
Elk Lake’s boys’ and girls’ cross country teams, who each won the PIAA Class AA state championship last fall, took a special trip to Harrisburg on Monday and were honored by Pennsylvania’s legislators.
The team was invited by Senators Gene Yaw and Lisa Baker, along with Representatives Tina Pickett and Sandra Major after achieving the state title in November.
Some of the festivities at the Capitol building included a team photo with Baker, Yaw, Pickett and Major in the main rotunda, a tour of the building, lunch and a presentation of citations on the House floor while it was in session on Monday.
Coach Will Squier said that it was a great experience for the team and coaches.
“It was just a great honor for us to be in there,” Squier said. “The most exciting part for me was the get to see the House of Representatives during session.”
Citations were presented to each team, and team members Mike Bedell and Maria Trowbridge were front and center to receive the honor from Reps. Pickett and Major.
Squier said the entire team was seated in the House while it was in session.
“To hear the gavel drop and see the Representatives come into session was great,” Squier said. “And with Maria and Mike on the platform to receive citations, it was great.”
Squier said that when the team was honored the entire House stood up and gave the teams a standing ovation.
“That was a very special moment for us,” Squier said.
He also said that he believes the team members will look back on the experience when they’re older.
“I think the kids will appreciate this more when they have their own children,” Squier said. “I don’t think they’ve lived long enough to put into perspective how great an honor it truly is.”
Trowbridge said that it was a great experience for her and her teammates.
“I was good getting to spend one more bus ride with the team,” Trowbridge said. “And being there really put into perspective how big winning states is.
“It was just neat to get that kind of recognition for what we accomplished.”
Bedell noted that he also had a lot of fun with his teammates.
“Just being there was cool, getting to see the Representatives and what they do every day was a good experience,” Bedell said.
He said that before going up to receive the citation he and Trowbridge were a little nervous.
“Before hand I was nervous,” Bedell said. “But once we got up there it was more laid back than I thought it would be.”
Bedell said that he is looking forward to the upcoming track and field team.
“I’m definitely looking forward to it,” Bedell said. “We’ve been getting ready for it.”
He will be specializing in the one mile run and the 4×800 relay, while Trowbridge will focus on the two mile.
“I’m very excited for track season,” Trowbridge said.