Senior hits stride in final XC season


Image Source: UVM

Senior Phoebe Koski (Left) runs with sophomore teammate Bel Sogoloff in the NCAA Northeast Regionals, Nov. 15. Koski posted a time of 20 minutes, 44.8 seconds, a personal best, for the 6k.

Most runners feel some kind of enjoyment each time they hit a personal record.

For senior Phoebe Koski, hitting a personal record feels sparkly.

“It feels good,” Koski said. “It’s kind of sparkly. I don’t know.”

The UVM men’s and women’s cross country teams traveled to Buffalo, New York, for the NCAA Northeast Regionals Nov. 15.

Koski hit a personal record as the top finisher for UVM, finishing the 6k in 20 minutes, 44.8 seconds and placing 48th overall in her race, according to UVM athletics.

Koski paced the women’s team as they took 13th place, according to UVM athletics.

Head coach Matt Belfield and teammate senior Sunny Nagpaul both said that Koski’s biggest contribution to the team is her ability to pace.

“She’s great at workouts,” Belfield said. “People can key off of her because she’ll run great workouts and be someone they can pace off of.”

In workouts, Koski said she usually takes the lead.

But when it comes to racing, she doesn’t like to take the lead. Instead, Koski said she likes to run as one big pack with her team.

Koski and Nagpaul have been running together since they were first-years on the team, Nagpaul said.

“We have pretty good conversations, and we talk while we run,” Nagpaul said. “Most of the other seniors are abroad, so it’s cool because me and [Koski] have like, a little group.”

Koski and Nagpaul are two of the four seniors on the roster this season, according to UVM athletics.

“Me and Phoebe shared rain at America East,” Nagpaul said. “It was America East our first year, and we had run the same race, and on our cooldown, it was like the first rain of spring.

“It wasn’t really, but it our first one when we were there together, so we ran in the rain.”

Belfield has been Koski’s coach since she started running for UVM in 2016, according to UVM athletics.

“The best race that comes to mind was the 1500-meter she ran last year outdoors in the wind at the University of New Hampshire,” Belfield said. “She executed really well and was able to beat a lot of really good people in that race.”

Koski said she just wanted to see an improvement from last year.

This season she earned America East All-Conference First Team honors after her race at the Regionals, according to UVM athletics.

Koski is majoring in anthropology with a minor in art history. She said she hopes to work in a museum.

When Koski is not running or working on schoolwork, she’s writing.

“I do write, and I like creative writing a lot,” she said. “Whenever I get the chance, I like to sign up for a creative writing elective.”

Outside of cross country, the team does a lot of wholesome activities like movie nights and apple picking, Koski said.

Nagpaul said a funny memory of Koski was her cat’s birthday party.

“I gave my cat a birthday party,” Koski said. “He just turned one. He’s a Libra with a Scorpio mood.”

During her time off for winter break, Koski said she’s going to spend time with friends.

“I’m excited to relax and maybe go to a concert or something,” Koski said.