Valley News Dispatch Spotlight athletes: Fox Chapel’s Ethan Martin, Plum’s Aaliyah Odom
School: Fox Chapel
Sport: Cross Country
Claim to fame: Martin won the Gateway Invitational with a time of 17 minutes, 20 seconds Sept. 1 at Boyce Park in Plum.He also took second at the Red, White & Blue Invitational at Schenley Park.
How much of a factor did the heat and humidity play at the meet?
The humidity always affects runners. Whenever you are out there working hard, it will slow you down. It did have a factor on me, but we train in the heat a lot. Our team has an advantage because we’re so used to it.
How many miles do you run during an average week?
The maximum we did this summer was 72 miles a week. That was toward the end of the summer. On average, we run about 65 to 66 miles a week.
Have any colleges reached out to you?
Very few of them. Annapolis sent me something. I’ve been looking there for a while. It’s really just been small, local schools. No D-I schools yet. Hopefully, after the cross country season, they’ll see my resume and reach out to me.
How good can Fox Chapel be this season?
I think we can be unstoppable. North Allegheny and Mt. Lebanon are always tough. I think we can win the section this year and surprise a lot of people.
Claim to fame: Odom scored three goals, including the game-winner in overtime, in Plum’s 3-2 win over Oakland Catholic in Section 3-AAA on Sept. 5. Odom scored both of the Mustangs’ goals in a 3-2 overtime loss against Franklin Regional last Thursday. The team leader in goals last season with 11, Odom has seven through Plum’s first four games.
What are you doing differently this year that’s brought on such early-season success?
I just want to be able to play with the team, so more of us are working together than in previous years when I was the striker. This year I have players beside me, so it’s a lot more help. We have a stronger attack than any other year.
Where would you like to attend college?
I would want to go to Pitt or Penn State. Pitt would be my No. 1 choice.
— Brian Graham