Cameron Ray has been one of Switzerland County High school’s most consistent runners over the past several years and now she will take that consistency to Hanover College.
The senior, who teamed with sophomore Leah Anders to give the Pacers one of the best one-two combinations in the area, made the announcement last week in a small ceremony in front of family and coaches.
“We were really happy to see her move onto the next level. She was kind of on the fence about it at times, so we’re really excited,” Switzerland County cross country coach Kris Sandlin said. “She’s somebody that is really talented academically and athletically. She works really hard so we are happy that she will be close to home and we can get out there and watch her run at the next level.”
It didn’t take long for Ray to settle on a school. Having run on the Hanover College course numerous times over her high school career between the Ohio River Valley Conference and sectional meets, Ray has gotten a good feel for the college by the tier and fell in love with the place.
“It’s close to home and it’s a small school and it’s very beautiful,” she said. “The good thing too is that I love that course.”
Ray has run near the top of Switzerland County’s results throughout her high school career. She was a three-time All-ORVC selection – missing only her freshman year by one spot – and she advanced to the regional four times and semi state twice.
And she also holds the sixth-fastest time in school history, an impressive feat in itself considering the caliber of runners produced by Switzerland County in recent years.
“Her greatest assets as a runner is that she is patient. She’ll start out a race conservative and she’ll hold that pace and not cut down for the entire race and I love that bout her,” Sandlin said. “She’s always calm and collected and I believe that’s her greatest aspect of leadership that she brings. You never see her get too high or too low. She comes in and takes care of business and that’s that.”
Ray plans to major in veterinary science.
“I love animals and I live on a farm,” She said, “Animals have always been a part of my life.”
Ray has not yet decided if she also will run track at Hanover.
“I’m not sure if I’m going to do track but definitely cross country because I really like cross country. I’ll just see how my schedule works out and see if I can fit track into it,” she said. “It’s definitely going to be a lot harder than high school and the competition is a lot harder so I’m definitely going to have to train harder and work harder.”
Sandlin, a standout runner himself at Franklin College, is more than familiar with the Hanover program. He knows coach Brian Power well and thinks Ray will fit in perfectly with his program.
“Coach Power has done a really good job with the program and the girls have a success over the past eight to 10 years and have been near the top of the conference and the guys are getting there as well. She’s going to be a great addition and help out there a lot,” Sandlin said. “I think she has all of the tools. The main thing that you see with freshmen coming in is getting that training in the offseason to make that jump to the next level. But besides that, the girls still runs 5K, occasional the 6K, but outside of that , she’ll do just fine.”
The Madison Courier