Saugatuck senior, Corey Gorgas has enjoyed an outstanding 2018 cross country season to date. In four starts, he's captured three victories and earned a runner-up finish at the highly competitive MSU Spartan Invitational due to his 15:13.30 clocking. This result represents a Michigan No. 5 (overall) and a US No. 43 for 2019 grads.
In his latest contest, Gorgas secured first place at the Portage Invitational in dominant fashion. Despite wet and muddy course conditions during the Division 4 race, he went 15:44.90 in a solo effort.
Gorgas also excels on the track; his notable pr's include: 4:15.74 (1600m) and 9:17.01 (3200m). He has a wealth of big meet experience that he can draw upon during his upcoming competitions; over the last few years, Gorgas has been a regular at state championship meets and New Balance Nationals, among others.
MileSplit had an opportunity to talk with Corey about how his season has gone so far and what he's aiming to accomplish in the future.
You had a great performance at the MSU Invite earlier in the season. Explain your preparations leading up to that meet and how the race developed out on the course for you.
MSU was my first chance to race some of the best guys in the state and try to get in a fast time. My preparation was just my summer base mileage. We hadn't started any of our workouts in order to be better prepared for some post-season meets, like Foot Locker and Nike. For me, the race was really a process of guys slowly dropping off of the pack until it was just Nick Foster, Alex Comerford, James Gedris and myself. In the last mile I started to trail a little bit, but I really kicked it into gear with 600 meters to go. I caught back up to those guys and kicked hard for a second place finish.
Your time of 15:13 was a new cross country pr over the 5K distance. Is that what you were expecting from yourself that day? In terms of time, how low do you think you can go this year?
I wasn't too surprised with the time, as I figured if the course was in good condition I'd be able to go under 15:15. I think if I'm in the right race with the right guys, I have a good shot at dipping under the 15 minute barrier. It's tough being in D4 because I don't have as many opportunities to race against some of the other best guys in the state.
You've made significant progress this year. What do you attribute the improvements to and have you changed anything training-wise?
I've definitely made some big improvements from last year, but I wouldn't attribute it to any significant changes in training. For me the number one thing is just staying healthy. Last cross country and indoor seasons, I dealt with pneumonia and a handful of small injuries that really set back my training. Just focusing on the little things to stay healthy is key for me. Training-wise I'm doing 50-55 miles per week along with a few hours of elliptical work for injury prevention.
What goals do you have for the rest of the season and where are you scheduled to compete?
I've definitely got big goals for this season. My team and I have been putting in a lot of work and are going for the team championship in Division 4. Individually I'd like to put in a fast time at the state meet, but I'm primarily focused on meets like Nike and Foot Locker Midwest. Being in Division 4 means I don't have a lot of opportunities to race guys until the post-season meets, but it does have its perks. I get to train through the state meet and not have to worry about wearing my body out during the regular season. By the time Nike and Foot Locker come around, I will have only raced hard 2-3 times. I think that will be very advantageous, as I'll be able to get a few solid months of training in without having to stress about in-state season races.
What colleges have you visited and talk about what the recruiting process has been like for you.
I've narrowed down my top four schools and have taken visits to the Air Force Academy, Michigan, Michigan State and Northern Arizona. I'm excited to sit down and narrow down what I like and dislike about each school and hopefully make a decision within the next few weeks.