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Athlete of the Week: Staley senior sets school 5K record

Drew Atkins
Posted at 9:24 PM, Nov 10, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-10 23:33:36-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — One local runner is setting records almost as fast as he runs.

Staley High School senior Andrew Atkins, the winner of the Suburban Red Conference Meet, picks up Hy-Vee Athlete of the Week honors.

Two years All-State and about to qualify for his second year All-Metro, Atkins set out with a goal of beating his school's 5K record.

"I told myself right after the meet last year, State, I just said, hey I have to do it," Atkins said. "I want to be the best finisher in Staley history... I want be the best at everything. I have been chasing it ever since I started."

Atkins started with his junior State appearance and finished 22nd with a time of 16:14 — not good enough for the Falcon.

"Drew is very coachable," Staley cross country head coach George Adair said."He is also very committed to his craft and making sure he does really well, and gosh, he's really competitive and with the competitiveness he's very confident as well, and that's whats pushed him to be as great as he is this year."

Atkins returned to State as a Senior and placed 7th with a time of 15:33, shaving almost 45 seconds in one season. That 7th place finish is the best by any Staley High School runner.

However, 15:33 isn't even his best. Atkins ran a 15:31 on the same course in September to set the 5k record at Staley, his long term goal from when he first began running.

The senior plans to run in college and will use the spring to finalize those goals.