School: St. Johnsbury Academy
Parents: Mark and Tara
Siblings: Saylor, 11
♦ Hemond saved her best for last, running a personal-best 20 minutes, 21 seconds at the New England Regional Championship.
♦ Hemond cracked the top 10 at the Division I state meet, placing ninth and leading the Hilltoppers to a sixth-place finish and a berth in New Englands, their 10th straight.
♦ Battling through lower leg injuries for much of the season, Hemond posted four top-two finishes, with two wins and two runner-up finishes.
♦ Pacing Northeast Kingdom runners this season, Hemond was eighth in the NVAC championship meet, leading St. J to a third-place team finish, and was the 12th-fastest Vermonter at the prestigious Manchester Invitational.
College Plans: None yet
Coach Says: “Merrick never ever gives less than 100% whether it is in a practice or a race,” said coach Tara Hemond. “She continually strives to improve to be the best runner she can be. She serves as a role model and earns respect from her team through her actions and positive attitude.”
Favorite moment from the season?
My favorite moment from the season would be going to the New England Championship in Manchester, Connecticut with my team. We all worked hard to be able to attend the event and it was a privilege to be there with my team representing the Academy.
With the holiday season here, what are you most grateful for?
I am most grateful for my family, friends and teammates. They are always there for me with constant encouragement, inspiration and laughs. Their level of care, kindness and support create such a strong sense of community that I am thankful to be a part of.
Did you reach your goal this season? Was there one you didn’t attain?
This season my ultimate goals were to place in the top 10 in Division I at the state meet and make the Vermont All-State team again. Although I was happy with reaching these goals, I hope to improve my placement and times next year.
The Record’s Girls Cross Country Runners of the Year
2019: St. Johnsbury Academy’s Merrick Hemond
2018: St. Johnsbury Academy’s Becca Green
2017: Lyndon Institute’s Zosia Prince
2016: St. Johnsbury Academy’s Becca Green
2015: St. Johnsbury Academy’s Annie Cunningham
2014: White Mountains Regional’s Jessica Schanlaber
2013: St. Johnsbury Academy’s Quinn Bornstein