“Team of Champions” – Mentor High School Cross Country

Cross Country was started at Mentor High School in 1931 but it was dropped from the sport program in 1936. Ed Masonbrink was the first cross country coach and at the same time was also the football coach. Some cross country meets were scheduled at the half time of the football game.  Because of the dual roll of the coach there wasn’t much interest in cross country. Therefore, it was discontinued.

Coogan Reese started the program again in 1961. The program has been quite successful at Mentor and the team has never had a losing season in dual meets. Dave McLaughlin was the coach for one year, 1979 and then Jim Green took over the program. Green coached cross country for 25 years.

The current coach is Bill Dennison and he has been coaching the Mentor Boys program since 2005.

  • “Most people run a race to see who is fastest. I run a race to see who has the most guts.” - ~Steve Prefontaine
  • “You can’t cheat the grind. It knows how much time you’ve invested. It won’t give you nothing you haven’t worked for.” - Anonymous
  • “He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life.” - Mohammad Ali
  • “Be strong enough to stand alone, be yourself enough to stand apart, but be wise enough to stand together when the time comes.” - Anonymous
  • “Strength doesn’t come from what you can do, it comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn’t.” - Anonymous
  • “Running cross country is the closest man will ever get to flying.” - Joseph VanderStel
  • “I am a distance runner. I’ve been trained to keep going, even when it’s hard. When it hurts. When it sucks. When I don’t want to. I look past it. Relentless forward progress to the finish. Call it what you want: stubbornness, endurance, determination, guts. Deep down, I don’t know how to give up.” - Anonymous
  • “Cross country runners with goals succeed because they know where they’re going.” - Anonymous