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For one sophomore student, basketball was his number one sport. He knew he had to come out strong this winter to make the team. Therefore, back in the fall he decided to go out for the cross country track team. He figured he'd be running every day and training with serious, good athletes under the direction of a coach. What he didn't figure on was loving the sport, doing extremely well and making it to the State level of competition. Jeremy Klaff, coach of the track team, said, "Richard Schmitz, came out of nowhere. He didn't run as a freshman and then comes out for the team for the first time as a sophomore. He was the new kid on the team. In his first year of competition he has established a reputation as one of the best runners in Nassau County."

Richard qualified to run in the States because he was a top 25 finisher in the Nassau County Championship held on Nov. 6 at Bethpage State Park . At the annual Cross County Awards Dinner held on Dec. 6 at Crest Hollow Country Club, Richard was awarded the recognition of: All-Division, All-Conference and All-County. The State competition was held at Binghamton on Nov. 12 and 13. Rooting and cheering for Richard was his family and Coach Klaff.

Richard is part of Schreiber's Sophomore Team, which was named the 2004 Sophomore Champions of Nassau County. Looking back over the past season, Richard said, "I had a great experience running cross country. I surprised myself in how good I was. I am already looking forward to next year. Now I'm hoping that playing basketball this winter will give me an edge on my running."


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