WISCONSIN RAPIDS — Sophomore Annie Haas felt a shift in her right hip as she was coming down a hill just after the one-mile marker at Saturday’s WIAA Division 3 state cross country meet.
The two-time individual Scenic Bluffs Conference champion and two-time state qualifier injured ligaments in the same hip last spring during track season and missed a handful of meets this year recovering.
Haas tried to fight through the pain to finish Saturday’s race, but it became too much to bear and she had to pull out just after the two-mile mark.
“She felt a shift in her hip and it got worse as the race went on,” said Hillsboro head coach Ben Leis. “There is not bone damage. It’s all tissue and ligament damage. It’s the same injury she has been dealing with since last track season.”
The wet, muddy conditions made footing difficult on the 5,000-meter course at the Ridges Golf Course in Wisconsin Rapids.
“Obviously this was not the end of the season we were looking for, but I am so proud of Annie from where she was at the end of track season to where she was at the end of this cross country season,” added Leis.
Haas missed nearly all of track season in the spring.
She returned for the beginning of cross country, but pulled out of the second race of the year on Aug. 28 at Cashton for precautionary reasons. She sat out the next six races and did not return until the Platteville Invitational on Oct. 3.
Twelve days later, she won a second straight individual conference title and finished ninth at the D3 Arcadia sectional on Oct. 24.
“She did everything she needed to do to come back,” said Leis. “She did pool workouts, bike and elliptical workouts when she was rehabbing. She put in a lot of work on her own. I’m just so extremely proud of her. The injury was unfortunate.”
Haas led the Hillsboro girls to the team conference this year on Oct. 15. The Hillsboro boys finished second after losing a tiebreaker to Brookwood.
“The season as a whole was great for Hillsboro,” said Leis. “My measuring stick of success is always how well we do at conference and how many kids we send to state. We won the conference title on the girls side, lost the boys title on a tiebreaker and Annie got back to state. I’m proud of all the kids and look forward to next year.”