A runner for Life: Soroco athletes sign to run in college
Skyler Clark will be a runner for Life. Obviously, it’s unknown if she’ll run for the rest of her life, but it’s official that she’ll be competing for Life University in Georgia next year.
Clark, a cross country and track athlete for Soroco High School, signed to compete in both sports for the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics school. She expects to compete in the 800, mile and two-mile races in track as well as the half-marathon and marathon.
Clark was inspired by Chloe Veilleux, who went to Union University to run after graduating from Soroco. Veilleux was a role model for Clark.
It’s been Clark’s goal to run the Chicago Marathon, but with injuries and the pandemic, she hasn’t been able to. She hopes to soon fulfill the goal, which she set on a whim while in the hospital.
“It all goes back to my first knee surgery,” said Clark, who had surgery to repair a torn meniscus more than two years ago. “I was laying in bed before I went under. I looked at (the doctor) and said ’You need to make my knee better so I can run the Chicago Marathon.’ Chicago Marathon came out of my mouth, and I kind of stuck with it I guess. My main goal is to run the Boston (marathon), and that is a qualifier.”
That injury changed Clark’s life in more ways than one. Not only did it give her a goal of running a marathon, but it also made her want to become a chiropractor. Clark chose Life not only for its athletic programs, but because it’s a chiropractic school where she can learn the ins and outs of her future career.
“Chiropractors really helped me avoid surgery as much as possible,” she said. “I just stuck with it and continued to watch my chiropractors at Thrival Mode and Lifted in Steamboat — (they) have really helped me get to the place I need to be with internships.”
Soroco senior Alex Colby will also be running cross country and track in college as he committed to Fort Lewis College in Durango. He’s happy to be attending college in a similar environment to the Yampa Valley so he can continue trail running, skiing and biking.
Officially having four more years of competing has been a saving grace for Colby, who recently had surgery after suffering a knee injury this winter.
“If I did not have the other four years of running, it would feel like everything was just over because of this injury,” Colby said. “But this, it gives me something to still work towards and work towards getting healthy.”
Colby realized he wanted to run in college when he was a sophomore.
“That’s when I found my passion for the sport,” he said. “From then, I wanted to continue it for as long as I could.”
Colby ran cross country all four years of high school and ran track three years, including last year’s canceled season. This year, he’s accompanying the team as the manager so he can still be a part of the team, even if he can’t compete due to his injury.
The Ram runner chose Fort Lewis, a NCAA Division II school, after meeting the coaching staff and some of the team. He agreed with their philosophies and believed the coach can build him up into the runner he wants to be while studying exercise science.
“We’re very happy and very proud of him. It’s a great choice for him,” said Steve Colby, Alex’s father. “He’ll be able to continue a lot of his lifestyle down there in the mountains.”
“It’s been his dream to run with the team, so we’re really excited he could do that,” added Alex’s mother Jane Colby.
To reach Shelby Reardon, call 970-871-4253, email sreardon@SteamboatPilot.com or follow her on Twitter @ByShelbyReardon.
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