Written and Media by Austin Brinkman [divide]
The Panther Cross Country coach Brian Patton is a very positive and uplifting coach on campus for Greenville College. Coach Patton is always caring for others and wanting his team to build strong relationships with each other while also growing as a team. Patton finds his aspirations for success through a particular C.S Lewis quote: “Unity is not found in positive emotions, but rather in hard work. Do not waste your time bothering whether you ‘love’ your neighbor; act as if you do.”
Patton is looking for the men’s team to improve, as it starts the year with seven of last year’s top runners. The women’s side may have more obstacles in the way, as the some of the top seven runners are struggling with illness and injury. Most importantly, Coach Patton just wants to build relationships with the men and women teams to develop a stronger fellowship as a team.
Coach Patton says having the newcomers will be a delight and will help both the men and women teams. He likes the new men’s team freshman and transfers who hope to make a quick transition to the program since the team will need them to help them grow with their talents. This will help the men be better and put up a good fight for the SLIAC Conference title competing against the other teams.
The women’s team is a different story as three of the top seven returners are hurt or ill, which is difficult to deal with as a team. He is hoping the newcomers will really help out the top seven, so that the team won’t drop down in the rankings. This being said it will be a difficult task to repeat their conference title win with their injuries the women’s team. With the addition of new talent, however, he believes the team will be successful.
Coach Patton believes that through building great relationships each member of the team will maximize their potential. If the upper classman can show great sportsmanship and lead by example, the team can overcome any obstacle. This week, the team will prepare for Friday’s meet at Olivet Nazarene. The team’s second meet of the season will take place on the 14-year anniversary of 9/11.