The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

The student news site of Los Altos High School in Los Altos, California

The Talon

Maddy Randall commits to UC Davis running

Courtesy Maddy Randall
This November, senior Maddy Randall committed to Division I cross country and track at the University of California, Davis. For the past couple of years, Maddy has contributed to the varsity girls cross country team’s success at CCS and state championships.

At the height of the pandemic, senior Maddy Randall joined the cross country team in hopes of staying in shape for soccer. Instead, she discovered a passion for running and a love for the cross-country community. This November, Maddy committed to run Division I cross country and track at the University of California, Davis.

“I felt at home when I was there,” Maddy said. “Everyone that’s part of the running community is really sweet and really supportive.”

Since her freshman year, Maddy has been a powerful force on the Los Altos High School cross country team. The team made it to the California Interscholastic Federation State Cross Country Championships in both 2021 and 2022, with Maddy placing in the top 100 both times. Additionally, Maddy was a part of the girls varsity team that attended Nike Cross Nationals in December 2022.

This fall, as one of the team captains, Maddy brings the cross country team closer by leading workouts and warmups, as well as simple things like learning every person’s name. Her teammates explain that she always does her best to stay encouraging and welcoming.

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“I try to make my attitude my strength, and I try to be very positive,” Maddy said.

Even when running becomes difficult, Maddy loves spending time with her teammates. She considers her teammates to be her biggest driving force and the reason she is able to push through during a hard day.

“I like to show up for my team,” Maddy said. “It’s a lot easier to show up for other people than yourself when you’re having a tough day.”

Her dedication and positivity make Maddy an inspiration to those around her, especially her teammates. Cross country is as much of a mental sport as it is physical. Outside stressors, especially for student-athletes, can reflect in a runner’s performance. This makes support from teammates valuable, during practice and before a race.

“She’s the one that motivates everyone to get going,” cross country runner sophomore Lily Symon said. “She’s really uplifting and good-spirited. If I’m going through something in running, I can just speak to her about it and she has great advice.”

Early this fall, Maddy suffered an overuse injury in her ankle, placing her in a boot and on crutches, preventing her from running. But her injury has not stopped Maddy from being there for her teammates and being there each day for practice.

“She comes to practice every single day, even though she can’t actually run,” cross country Head Coach Steph MacKenzie said. “She smiles and she leads everyone through warmups and core, and she doesn’t complain about being injured.”

Being injured can take a toll on an athlete training as rigorously as Maddy, as she’s unable to participate in a sport that she loves and be around the team.

“It is upsetting to not be able to be around my teammates all the time and running brings me so much joy, so it’s difficult,” Maddy said.

For now, Maddy cross-trains with core, strength exercises and pool running. Putting in the work to stay fit means Maddy can be back to running and competing sooner.

Through the challenges in her running career, Maddy’s work ethic and outstanding speed piqued the interest of multiple colleges, but Maddy found herself drawn to UC Davis and announced her commitment in November. In addition to the excitement that comes with competing as a Division I athlete, Maddy looks forward to studying international relations, with a focus on world trade and development.

But whether she’s studying, running or supporting her team from the sidelines, Maddy enjoys it all.

“I love competing, I love the community and I really just love the sport,” Maddy said.

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