Salute to Seniors: St. Joseph's Ava Dobson

Name: Ava Dobson
High school: St. Joseph's Catholic School
Event PRs: 1 mile: 4:58, 3200m: 10:32, 5K (xc): 16:55

Hobbies: eating a lot

What was your most memorable race/competition?
My most memorable race was probably the 2019 state championship or Foot Locker Nationals.

How have you handled the suspension of the 2020 outdoor season?
I've handled it ok - it's definitely frustrating, especially since I was hoping to PR even further, but knowing that everyone is in this together and appreciating the fact that, even though we can't race, we can still run and go outside, has helped! It was really the best decision that could have been made- we don't want to extend this quarantine even further and have to miss out for a really long time, instead of, hopefully, a short time!

Out of all your high school accomplishments, which stands out the most?
Definitely being able to break 17 in xc. Coming into this year, my goal was to hit 17:30, but never in a million years did I think it was possible to break 17 minutes and I'm so happy that I could!

If you could do it all over again, what would you change about your athletic career in high school?
Nothing- even though I did get injured, they helped me learn what not to do, and I think that has helped me immensely!

What were the most difficult obstacles you had to overcome?
Injuries for sure! Having to sit on the sidelines was extremely tough!

What will you miss the most?
My teammates who I LOVE SO MUCH.

Do you have any advice for younger athletes?
Don't rush into heavy mileage! Start out small and progressively go for longer mileage. I learned this the hard way and got injured!

How have your coaches influenced your performances and your life goals?
My coach pushed me to work hard and taught me to be confident! Looking back, I've seen how much more outgoing I've become after having been coached by her for 3 years- the difference from sophomore to senior year is crazy! I know I wouldn't be that way without her!

The South Carolina All-Decade XC Awards 2010-2019 

What kind of impact did your family have on your time as a high school student-athlete?
My family's support definitely pushed me through immensely- they kept me going through injuries and worries and I could not have been successful without them!

What are your college or post-high school plans?
Cross country and track and field at UNC Chapel Hill.

What do you hope to achieve after high school?
I'd absolutely love to lower my prs as far as possible!

Do you see yourself coaching in the future? Please explain and if so, what level and why?
I'm not sure quite yet- maybe!

My team. I love you all waaaaay too much (even you Lauren) and we will be running that 4x8 don't you worry :-).

If there is one thing in the world you could do, what would it be and why?
Find the coronavirus cure.