by Journalism I student Pedro Solá Porta López, exchange student

Coach Dale Hartney will accomplish his 36th season as the head coach of the boys cross country team, and his 28th season with the girls cross country team this fall. Moreover, he turns 70 Oct. 2, 2012.

Hartney said he has been coaching cross country in UA since 1968—both at Hastings Middle School and UAHS—and in 1977 he took over the boys team. Throughout his long career, Hartney has inspired students’ dreams by telling them his goal: to guide the teams to the state championships.

“In 20 out of 27 years that I have been coaching girls, they have qualified to the state championships,” Hartney said. “I had at least six girls who qualified for the high school state championships in their four years of high school.”

Senior Nathan Perry said he is impressed with Hartney’s dedication to the sport and to the athletes he coaches.

“He is a really good guy,” Perry said. “Everything he does has a good reason behind it.”

Echoing Perry’s admiration, sophomore Megan Brewer said Hartney has taught her important lessons about running.

“In my freshman year I learned the three Cs’ that are: concentration, confidence and composure,” Brewer said.

After all the years he has coached, Hartney said he still enjoys coaching. “It is what I love to do,” he said.