Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Sports Person of the Week

Bloss Crosses Finish Line of Fantastic Career


Meredith Bloss had quite the career as one of the most heralded distance runners in the history of Guilford’s girls’ cross country, indoor track, and outdoor track teams. Photo courtesy of Meredith Bloss

Meredith Bloss had quite the career as one of the most heralded distance runners in the history of Guilford’s girls’ cross country, indoor track, and outdoor track teams. (Photo courtesy of Meredith Bloss )

Meredith Bloss’s career as a runner began when she was encouraged by her friends to attend a cross country team meeting in middle school. That moment led Meredith on a road that saw her become one of the most decorated athletes in Guilford High School history. Meredith recently completed a career in which she dominated in the 5K for cross country, as well as the 1,600 and the 3,200 on the track, while winning each of those events at multiple postseason meets.

Meredith, a recent graduate, did a variety of sports growing up, from baseball to basketball to horseback riding. When she was a student at Adams Middle School, Meredith’s friends urged her to attend a meeting for the cross country team, and she never looked back.

Meredith went on to become a three-season long-distance star for Guilford’s girls’ cross country, indoor track, and outdoor track programs. Meredith earned several All-SCC and All-State accolades for all three teams, in addition to helping the cross country squad claim SCC titles and finish second at states during the 2017 and 2018 campaigns.

“A lot of my success came from having a solid base of people supporting me. My aunt helped me with running nutrition, and my dad and older sister ran track in high school, so I had a solid support of family and friends behind me,” Meredith says. “One thing that helped was having patience during races. I used to go out way too fast to start. You also can’t frontload your training before the start of a year.”

Meredith had a lot to learn about the world of high school running when she first stepped on the trails and the track. As she logged more and more miles, Meredith started turning in top-notch times and eventually became unstoppable with an unwavering confidence.

“It gives you a lot of confidence when you know you can place high in races,” says Meredith. “When I started running in high school, I didn’t even know what State Opens and New Englands were. I’ve come a long way since then. I also learned how to be a more patient and rock-steady person.”

Meredith led a young Guilford club as a senior captain this spring. While that presented some challenges, Meredith hearkened back to the impact of her predecessors in order to find that guiding light.

“It was harder as a captain this year, because we didn’t have too many seniors,” Meredith says. “I was very close to the captains last year, so I tried to emulate their style and not show any negativity as a leader.”

Girls’ outdoor track Head Coach Jon Rivera says that Meredith was always honest with both herself and her teammates in an effort to help everyone find their stride. Rivera adds that she also displayed great humility while experiencing such tremendous success.

“Meredith was a straight shooter. Whether it was assessing herself or anyone else, she told you the truth with no sugarcoating. Mature beyond her years, it was like having another coach out there with us,” says Rivera. “No one trained harder. She shattered the 3,200-meter record, and Guilford has had plenty of talented girls throughout the history of the program. [She is] one of the humbler stars you will find and a team-first athlete all the way. We’re going to miss her at practices and meets.”

Meredith is going to attend Division I Cornell University in Ithaca, New York, where she will study engineering while competing for the women’s cross country, indoor track, and outdoor track teams. As she looks back at her time at Guilford, Meredith says she will remember how the experience not only unlocked her athletic potential, but also a new side of her personality.

“Going into high school, I was content to stay out of the public radar around school, but once I started winning races, I became more willing to be extroverted,” says Meredith. “I made a lot of friends through the cross country and track community. It also helped put things in perspective. One test doesn’t sound so bad when compared to running an 11-minute race.”

John Lecardo covers sports for Guilford, Madison, and Haddam-Killingworth for Zip06. Email John at j.lecardo@shorepublishing.com.

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