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The Foothill Dragon Press

The Student News Site of Foothill Technology High School

The Foothill Dragon Press

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Athlete of the Week: Rebecca Walker

Rihanna Samples
Rebecca Walker ’24 receives Athlete of the Week for her remarkable 2023 Cross Country season, where she displayed her exceptional skills as one of the top runners on campus. The Foothill Technology High School (Foothill Tech) community appreciates all her hard work in representing the school.

As a four-year athlete competing in Foothill Technology High School’s (Foothill Tech) cross country program, Rebecca Walker ‘24 has been an integral part of the team’s success. Walker’s love for running has not been a recent affair but has been a part of her life for many years before entering into Foothill Tech’s program.

She stated, “I have been involved in many sports over the years but I started running around fifth or sixth grade. I first joined cross country because my brother was joining and I wanted to challenge myself.” Like many before her, an affinity for running did not come easily and at first she, “hated it, but I wasn’t going to quit.”

However, as time went by, she grew a love for the sport which was fostered by teammates and coaches alike. One influential figure in her running career was an old Foothill Tech cross country coach and teacher, Coach Ken Reeves. As she had taken a break from running to pursue other sports, “he got a hold of me and inspired me to start running again. I truly owe my running career to him.”

Some standout moments in her running career have been during her senior year, specifically the TCAA League Finals where Walker ran the three-mile race and earned first place with a new personal record (PR) of 19:09.2. Another was at the 2023 Asics Clovis Invitational where she competed in the 5000 meter race and reached her PR of 19:42.4, placing her 19th out of over 200 other runners.

After entering the school’s team, the sport transformed from a hobby to a lifestyle. She spoke on the benefits of running, stating, “It has helped me establish resilience, self-discipline, joy for small things and confidence. When it comes to school, family life, my mental health, relationships and basically everything in life, I know that I can do hard things which allows me to embrace hardships with a strong mindset.”

One such obstacle presented itself during the 2022 season as an injury, preventing Walker from competing. “Last season I was at the lowest point I think I have ever been due to my stress fracture. Unknowingly, I ran on this stress fracture all of cross country season but ultimately had to take many months to rest during track season.”

However, this did not deter Walker, as she commented, “My teammates kept me going. I knew that I needed to stay strong so I could get back to pushing and supporting my girls,” staying true to her philosophy that, “life isn’t supposed to be linear; obstacles are inevitable but conquerable.”

To summarize her experiences, she stated, “I love the lifestyle and family I have adopted. I truly can’t see myself ever not running at some capacity. I have met some of my best friends and mentors through this sport and I can’t wait to meet so many more in the future.”

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About the Contributors
Julia Geib
Julia Geib, Assignment Editor
Parmesan cheese lover.
Rihanna Samples
Rihanna Samples, Multimedia Editor
A junior who is constantly looking at the world through the lens of a camera.

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