Reina breaks three-year-old record

The weather was almost perfect on Sept. 21 at the Missouri Southern State Stampede, where junior Reuben Reina was encouraged to run faster because of the other competitors. Even though he placed second in the race, he broke the Har-Ber Cross Country 5k record.

“It was an over 40 second PR which is very unusual for this level,” cross country coach Joe Crommett said.

Reuben’s previous personal record was 16:06.

“I was expecting to run that fast,” Reina said.

The previous record was held by TJ Sugg at 15:17. Reuben beat the time by four seconds at 15:13.

“Reuben’s naturally talented but he works very hard. He wants to be great and he does the things it takes to be great,” Crommet said.

One way Reuben trains is by running with the team. Although he starts with the team, he usually finishes the workouts before the rest. According to Crommett he can run the workouts faster so he does better.

“He’s one of our team captains this year, him and Bryant Pelkey. They have done a really good job of building a positive culture around the team so they can be successful,” Crommett said.

They build a positive culture by encouraging the team and training together. According to Crommett, they also try to push people to do their best but a lot of their leadership is not shown during races. It shows up in their attitude.

“I really thought this year was the year he was going to explode on to the scene, and he did that the second race of the season, so I was pretty proud,” Pelkey said.

Pelkey was also happy for Reuben along with the rest of the team.

“I look up to him so seeing him break that record, I was proud of him,” cross country runner and teammate Johnny Corrdero said.

According to Crommett Reuben is well liked by the team. He also doesn’t use the fact that he’s better than everybody else to separate himself, he uses it to make everybody better.

“I’ll just try to break it again next year or this year too,” Reina said.

Another goal Reina has is to win state as an individual, as well as with the team.

“It makes me want to run faster too because right now he’s in the spotlight and if we want to win state as a team we all have to be fast like him,” Corrdero said.

This record also makes the team want to improve even more to keep up with Reina.

“I plan on going to college with my running career, that’s all,” Reina said.

Crommett believes Renia will be a division one runner.

“He’s just Reuben, there’s only one Reuben,” Crommett said.