Salute to Seniors: Perry Hall Runner Kaylee Copenspire

Photo: Craig Amoss

Name: Kaylee Copenspire

School: Perry Hall

What was your most memorable race/throw/jump/vault/moment? Why is that?

My most memorable race was the 2 mile at New Balance Indoor Nationals 2022 because it was my first National competition as well as where I got my new season personal record. I remember stepping on the line knowing that nothing got me there except for my hard work and dedication. What made it most memorable was the hug of proudness my dad gave me as I came off the track.

Was there a certain moment or breakthrough race/meet when you realized you would be able to compete at a high level?

The moment I placed top 3 at Maryland State Indoor Championships in Class 4A. I had already had a couple of official visits and was in the recruiting process, but this race made me realize I am a competitor and I am even hungrier for more.

What are some bumps in the road that you've encountered when it comes to training for different events during the season?

A big obstacle this year, along with many others, was Covid. Over spring break, my family took a trip to Florida where I stayed back to train and I was personally hitting my fastest time trials getting me very excited for the season. Unfortunately, my family came back and spread a severe case of Covid and for me, long Covid (where I suffer the symptoms for a longer period than most). I am actually still presently dealing with some of the breathing issues, but as each day goes by, it gets a little better. I am still very grateful for being able to qualify and compete at Maryland States Championships as well as New Balance Nationals Outdoor.

If you are writing a letter to your younger freshman self, what advice might you give them?

Every time you think you are not good enough, remember you are the only person saying that, because you would not be where you are without hard work, dedication, and passion.

If you had to pick: Track and Field or Cross Country, and why? (If you only run Track, then don't worry about explaining why).

I would choose cross country as I love the summer miles as well as racing in nature. I am a big nature girl so racing through the woods, trees, and new places makes me love the sport even more.

What are your post-high school or college plans? If Running in college, explain why you picked that school.

I am very blessed to be committed to High Point University to run cross country and track and field in the upcoming seasons. The moment I stepped on campus, I knew that it was the place where each morning, I could not leave my dorm without having a smile on my face with the environment that would surround me. I know Coach Tamer as well as my new team will push me to help me be the best Kaylee I can be, athletically, academically, and socially.

What is your favorite pre-race snack, tradition, etc.?

Honey Stinger Cracker Bar

Name the top Maryland Cross Country or Track moment(s) you have witnessed. Could be by the level of greatness or just something that really stood out to you.

The top moment I have witnessed was Gavin Sherry taking first place at Northeast Regional Championships at Van Cortland Park breaking the course record.

Who would you like to say "thank you" to?

I would like to say thank you to my family, especially my dad as he has encouraged me to always chase my goals. He sacrificed countless hours of his time just to help push me through a track workout and talk me through race strategies, even when he had other obligations. I can not thank him enough for always being by my side as well as inspiring me as he played football at the University of Tennessee as an elite athlete.

Is there anything else you would like to mention that stands out over the past 4 years?

The magazine article that was written about me this year on Honeygo Living. I felt star-struck when the magazine was opened to my face on my table as I walked in from practice.

It was incredible seeing all the talented and amazing athletes this year, and I can't wait to continue to race with most of them at the Division 1 level!