Barcenas set PR at state meet

FINISHING STRONG. Giving it his all at Old Settler's Park in Round Rock at the UIL State Cross Country Meet, senior Carlos Barcenas works for a strong finish.  He broke his PR at the meet and finished in the top 20.

photo or infographic by Ryan Springs

FINISHING STRONG. Giving it his all at Old Settler's Park in Round Rock at the UIL State Cross Country Meet, senior Carlos Barcenas works for a strong finish. He broke his PR at the meet and finished in the top 20. "When I run, I focus on the person in front of me, rather than the time," he said

Cross country has a long legacy of success. Year after year, runner after runner has worked hard and achieved success as members of the team.

Four years ago as a freshman, Carlos Barcenas qualified for his first state cross country meet. On Saturday, November 9th, he ran the 3.1 miles for the last time as a member of the Wildkat cross country team four years later. He ran broke his PR by running 15.54.

“Being in XC for four years was something that I never regretted,” Barcenas said. “I was able to develop into the person I am today because of it and it has helped me become someone who’s confident and who thrives on competition.

The cross country team is close. Barcenas feels that the family-like nature of the team helped him throughout his years in high school.

“When you’re in XC, you feel like you belong right away,” he said.  “The atmosphere with your teammates feels like being part of a family. It was no wonder I felt like I fit in immediately going into high school.”

Barcenas has been with some of the team since elementary school. His life long friends trained with him right up to race day.

“I was happy for him,” senior Kebin Guerro said. “We often trained all week before the race.  At the end of the day, we both had a good time and I got to see Carlos break his PR.”

After fours years of success, Barcenas is not ready to stop running competitively. He has set the bar high when it comes to his future goals.  

“My plan after high school is to hopefully compete at a D1 college for XC,” he said. “I won’t reveal any more details until later.”

Making it to state once is no easy task. Barcenas qualified for the elite race four times. He is also the president of DECA and a member of the UIL academic team. He knows success is more about attitude than anything else.  

“It’s simply my mentality,” Barcenas said. “Growing up, me and my family went through so many difficulties, and yet both of my parents continued to be positive and seemed to enjoy life with me as if nothing was going on. They were great role models to me as I realized that there would always be difficulties occurring during my life. I always seemed to have a positive mentality and let my long term goals drive me ahead.”