She's qualified because: Delivered the best season in history for a female within the natural boundaries of the Central Section. That would exclude four-time state champion Jordan Hasay of Mission Prep-San Luis Obispo, which is no longer part of the section. Reedy won Tri-River Athletic Conference, section Division I and state D-I titles before placing seventh at the Nike Cross Country Nationals in Portland. She became the section's first D-I champion in the 25-year history of the state meet with a time of 17 minutes, 27 seconds over the 3.1-mile course at Woodward Park. Only Hasay (17:02), who competed in D-V, has run faster from the section.
If ever there was a 27th-place finish that screamed for attention in the CIF State Cross Country Championships at Woodward Park, this was it.
The date was Nov. 27, 2010, when Buchanan High sophomore Hagen Reedy followed 26 runners to the finish line in the Division I championship.
She was timed in 18 minutes, 23 seconds -- nearly 1 1 /2 minutes behind winner Sarah Baxter of Simi Valley.
But Reedy did so with leg tendinitis so severe it drove her to tears soon after the race while her teammates celebrated the group's third-place finish.
Bears coach Brian Weaver was observing, thinking: "One of the greatest efforts ever. And that's something we'll build on the next couple years."
Sure enough, one year later, it was a ready Reedy -- injury free -- sailing through the finish line at 17:27 and 5 seconds ahead of her nearest challenger while delivering the Central Section's first D-I female state champion in the 25-year history of the meet.
"No complaints at all," she says. "I was healthy all year and I'm really happy how it went."
It closed with a seventh-place finish in the Nike Cross Country Nationals at Portland.
"I was hoping to get in the top 15," she says. "Getting top seven was pretty amazing."
Yet not a surprise to Weaver, who saw something special developing, first under difficult circumstances last year and then no doubt after Reedy placed third in September's high-caliber Woodbridge Invitational in Irvine.
"That was her breakthrough meet, no question about it," Weaver says. "That's when the desire she had always expressed came out physically. After that we were saying, 'Anything could happen.' "
It did, Nov. 26, when Reedy separated from Marina-Huntington Beach's Laura Hollander in the final 200 meters and almost had to suppress a smile as she found herself uncontested at the wire.
She might as well won the state lottery, Weaver says: "She made the commitment and has been living the lifestyle of a runner, someone who wants to be great. Now she knows how to do it, and that's the hardest point for any athlete. The hardest is to make your first million and then, it's easy, hopefully for her."
Now, of course, the setup for 2012.
Reedy will go nowhere without a target on her back.
"I'm excited for next year and to focus on what I want to do," she says. "I'll try not to think about expectations and reach my own goals."
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