By Sierra Marrero |Staff Writer|
Student Soleil Hall, had an outstanding year on the California State University San Bernardino (CSUSB) Cross Country team.
With a short running career, Hall has proved that her short time being in cross country is no match for the amount of natural talent she possess.
Hall explained that she came to CSUSB on a scholarship for soccer, but ended up running for CSUSB instead. This year is Hall’s first to run on any cross country team.
Hall explained how she got into running with only one year of running experience when she did track in high school.
Hall never thought she would run again until she met head coach Tom Burleson.
” I would run around campus in the mornings, and coach always saw me. I enjoyed running, and coach would try to get me to run for the team… he saw potential in me and I never saw it… I never thought I would run again but here I am!” Hall said.
Hall started her college running career in 2015 during CSUSB’s first year of track and field. She had a best personal time of 4:48 for the 1500 meter run.
During this cross country season, Hall has already topped the charts with a running time of 22:31.20 for the women’s 6K coming in an exceptional third place, which helped her become previous California Collegiate Athletics Association (CCAA) Athlete of the Week.
Hall said that the Coyote Challenge Meet, held at CSUSB, was her most memorable moment because “my dad came for the first time, so it was nice of him to see me, and I ended up getting third.”
Although this is Hall’s first cross country season she has put a lot of heart and hard work into the sport.
Hall’s pre-season had her juggling being a social media intern in Beverly Hills and working at Jamba Juice and Sam’s Club.
“Every morning I ran at 4am so I could make it to my internship in LA on time, and after I had work so the only time I had to run was 4am! Hardest summer of my life,” Hall laughed.
However, Hall has not let any obstacles get in the way of her love of the sport. Hall explained that there is “this feeling” she gets when she runs.
“I get zoned out. And all of my problems go away, and it makes me really happy.”
Hall enjoys cross country so much because her team is consistently supportive and motivating one another.
Hall explained, “there’s no negativity on the team. It’s nice to be a part of a talented and determined group of girls.”
Not only are her teammates her inspiration, but her coaches are always motivating her to do better.
“I don’t feel as talented as they [coaches] think I am, but they give me a belief in myself,” said Hall.
Some may have thought that Hall has been running her whole life, but it just comes to show how her hard work and her determination prevailed.
While Hall does have a very competitive spirit, she has another side to her that some would describe as laid back. When asked about some facts she would like people to know, she had a very humorous and light-hearted nature to her.
Favorite food: “I’m in love with bananas. They are life to me”.
Experiences with former teammate Jackie Felix: “I think every time is funny with Jacky. We always say the same stupid things. I don’t think we’ve ever had a serious convo”.
Coach Burleson would describe Hall as : ” Ditsy, funny, happy, and a hard worker…I get on Coach Burleson’s nerves like everyday”.
Favorite Professor: ” Professor Rivera”.
Life Half Full or Half Empty:” I always see it with life half full. I think everything is going to be so easy and my mom gets mad all the time at me because she doesn’t think it is “.
Favorite joke: ” If one of my friends is singing, I’ll ask them who sings the song ,and say then say well let them sing the song”.
Future goals: ” I want to own my own my own public relations firm for big businesses in LA. I want to live in a really big apartment. I don’t want a house because I don’t want to deal with a yard. Nobody has time to cut a lawn. I want to be my own boss and enjoy life…”