By Steven Kimball

Some things in life seem meant to be: one such thing is that Meghan McPhee is a

Andover’s Meghan Mcphee paces Lowell’s Erin Donovan.

distance runner. As an incoming freshman there was simply no question that the outgoing McPhee would pursue her true love at the high-school level.

Coming from a long line of successful runners — most notably her father, Dennis, who has completed many marathons over the years– McPhee has established herself amongst the top long distance runners in the highly competitive Merrimack Valley Conference. Following a breakout campaign in 2011, including a trip to the MIAA ALL-STATE Meet, McPhee  has bettered her Personal Best 5K time by over 40 seconds, recently recording a time of 19:41.

McPhee explained, “This has been a long time goal of mine to get under 20 minutes for a 5 kilometer run; when it actually happened I was ecstatic.”

It was clear to Andover Cross Country coach Leo Lafond that something was different about the fitness of McPhee after a strong summer of training. McPhee said, “The girls and I were running about 35 miles a week with a long run of 9 miles on Saturdays.” It’s clear that the summer efforts have paid off as she has far surpassed her career goal.

Following her freshman year, it was clear that McPhee had a great deal of potential; she recorded times in the low 21-minute range, already a imposing feat. As a sophomore, McPhee took off, developing as a consistent number two runner for a talented Warriors team that advanced to all-states. As a junior, McPhee prevailed once again, despite a serious stress fracture that impaired her summer training. With very little summer mileage behind her McPhee still recorded an impressive time of 20:20.

Off the course McPhee is equally impressive, serving as a member of the National Honor Society in addition to serving as a cross-country team captain. The humble McPhee remarked, “I love cross country due to the team aspect. It’s less about your individual performance and more about the team’s overall performance.”