Nevada Mareno: student, athlete, and record breaker.
Last Saturday, January 31, Malia Ellington from Community School of Ellington set the new 1000-meter N.C. record with a time of 2:53:23. Just a few hours later, Mareno raced in a different meet, and allowed Ellington’s NC record to stand for only a matter of time.
Her time was clocked in officially at 2:49:79, beating Ellington’s time by almost five whole seconds.
“I believe the key to my success has been an unrelenting mindset and the encouragement from my teammates,” said Mareno after the race.
Success isn’t new to Mareno. In fact, this is only one of her records. She holds the Leesville women’s cross country record for the 5K as well, with an official time of 18:07.
Mareno’s sister, Jordan Mareno, has been alongside Nevada through it all.
Jordan is a senior, in the top five of her class, was recently admitted into UNC Chapel Hill and has been running cross country with Nevada since Nevada’s freshman year.
Success runs in the family, but she said Nevada’s success is something special.
“When Nev(ada) was an incoming freshman, I would tell people she was going to be a powerful addition to the program. They would say ‘yeah, yeah, we’ll see,’ but after her performance freshman year, it was clear that the cross country had underestimated her and I had as well.”
Jordan also says that there is a sense of pride in the family because of the success achieved both academically and especially athletically.
“Our whole family is proud of her, especially my dad who has been running since his teens. We admire her for never backing down from a workout and allowing competition to inspire her.”
The next event on the list for Mareno is the David Oliver Classic Meet at JDL Fast Track in Winston-Salem this Friday through Saturday. And never shying down from her next challenge, Nevada already has the next goal mapped out.
“I am participating in the 4×800 with my teammates G’Jasmyne Butler, Sydney Winchel, and Taylor Hemming Friday evening in which we are going for the win and to break our PR from last year. Then I’m running in the elite mile Saturday afternoon and trying to break 5 (minutes),” said Mareno.
Whether Mareno breaks another record this weekend or not, her success will not be questioned. She has established her success across the state and is still young, only a sophomore at Leesville.