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Local youths set to lace running shoes for Junior Olympic series

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Several runners will be representing the Fayette County Youth Running club at the Indiana Association Race, part of the Junior Olympic series, to be held in Columbus on Saturday.Participants pictured include Robby House (St. Garbriel, 2nd), Charlotte Latham (CMS, 7th), Graham Pflum (St. Gabriel, 2nd), Jacob Richardson (CMS, 7th), Drew Wright (Everton, 6th)and Eli Wright (Everton, 4th).
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Connersville’s Adrianna Marcum crosses the finish line as the winner of the Fayette County Cross Country meet. Marcum will be running at theIndiana Association Race for the Junior Olympic series on Saturday.

By GRADY TATE - gtate@newsexaminer.com

Several young runners, representing the Fayette County Youth Running club, will travel to Cerland Park in Columbus, Ind. on Saturday, ready to toe the line for a cross country race.

The event is called the Indiana Association Race, and it is the first in a three-race set, part of the Junior Olympic series.

Several of the participants from the local club are running in the series for a second-straight year.

Charlotte Latham (CMS, 7th-grader), Jacob Richardson (CMS, 7th), Drew Wright (Everton, 6th), Eli Wright (Everton, 4th), Graham Pflum (St. Gabriel, 2nd) and Robby House (St. Gabriel, 2nd) were all competitors last year.

Latham finished 16th one year ago and qualified for the regional meet. The trio of Drew (21st), Pflum (24th) and Eli (26th) also reached the regional meet.

Both Richardson and House finished 31st in their respective races last year, each of them missing a regional qualification by one spot.

This year, Latham and Richardson will run a 4K with advancement in mind. The Wright brothers will run a 3K, while Pflum and House will put their legs to the test in a 2K distance.

Saturday’s event will also feature some first-year performers from the FCYR club.

Adrianna Marcum will headline that group, the Everton fourth-grader coming off of her win in the Fayette County Cross Country championships. She will run a 3K on Saturday.

Also running a 3K distance will be Axle Pflum, a sixth-grader from St. Gabriel.

Joining the Fayette County kids at the Columbus meet will be three siblings from Morristown, Taylor, Landon and Chloe Tragesser.

Their mother, Ashley Tragesser grew up in Connersville and graduated from CHS.

Taylor is a fourth-grader, Chloe is a third-grader, and Landon is the youngest, in first-grade.

Taylor ran with the Morristown Junior High cross country team in the fall, and her siblings plan to run for the school as well.

“Taylor is a standout runner, and I am super excited to see her and Adrianna (Marcum) run together,” Fayette County coach Kelli House said of the addition.

To qualify for the regional, a runner must earn a top-30 finish in his or her respective race. Saturday’s runs are expected to start at 1 p.m.

Those qualifying for the regional will travel to Nashville, Ind. for that run on Nov. 24.