Edison’s Louis Colson was out of breath, his hands on his hips.
He was tired, but smiling, impressed with the time he just ran at the Oatlands Invitational in Leesburg.
“Fifteen [minutes] 16 [seconds],” he said. “Definitely” a course-best for him.
Colson won the boys’ competition with a pace of 4:55 per mile. His time set a new course record at Oatlands, besting the mark previously set by Sherwood’s Solomon Haile in 2008.
Poolesville’s Chase Weaverling was the runner-up with a time of 15:28. Battlefield won the boys’ team race, placing its top three runners in the top 20. Winning the girls’ race was Urbana’s Emily Mulhern, with a time of 18:32. Oakton’s Allie Klimkiewicz finished second in 18:43 to lead the Cougars to the girls’ team title.
Colson has emerged as one of the area’s top runners, if not the best in the entire metro area. Two weeks ago, he posted a 14:43 time on the Burke Lake course at the Monroe Parker Invitational. Saturday’s time placed ninth best in Monroe Parker history and one second behind Edison’s best on the course, set by George Watts in 1974.
Colson paced himself through the Oatlands course for the first two-thirds of the race on Saturday. At that point, he knew he’d have to make a move if he was going to come away with another victory.
“I took off at the two-mile mark and held on,” Colson said. “I was conservative until the last stretch just to make sure I could finish it off strong.”
Colson, a senior, is hoping to continue his track and cross-country ambitions at an Ivy League school next year. He’s one of Harvard’s top recruits as Colson visited the Crimson last weekend.
Colson is not looking to rush his decision, opting to let the cross-country season play out first.
Edison Coach Bernadette Flynn said Colson is being recruited to participate in cross-country, indoor track and outdoor track.
“It’s a matter of where the coaching staff wants to race him from there,” she said.
Colson’s desire to attend a school such as Harvard is so he can prepare for life after his running days are over.
“I really want to have that balance in academics and sports,” he said. “I want to push myself in both. That’s just how I am, I want to be the best in everything I do.”
Colson will compete again in two weeks at the 2013 Great American Cross Country Festival in Cary, N.C.
As a team, Edison finished 28th for the day, though Flynn said three runners did not participate due to conflicting schedules.
Colson is hoping performances like this will help place him on a bigger stage nationally by season’s end.
“The team goal is to get to states,” Colson said. “It would be a great accomplishment if we could do that. For my individual goals. I would really like to go to Foot Locker [Cross Country Championships] out in California.”