To find information on the spring Track & Field team, click here.


Welcome to St. Charles Cross Country!

Our hope is to teach the kids running skills that will help them develop a love for the sport and help them with their other athletic pursuits. We will also focus on good sportsmanship and try to to instill in the kids a desire to be active and acquire healthy habits; things they can take with them long after cross country (XC) season is over.

Prayer, thanksgiving and respect for others, all of which are important components of our Catholic faith, are incorporated daily into what we do as a team both at practices and meets!

Our season runs July 27 through October 8. It culminates in our competing against 25 other Catholic schools in the archdiocese CYO championships in Indianapolis on October 7 & 8.

See calendar for all dates/times/locations of practices and meets.


Maria Hamilton С Head Coach

Home: 812-335-9272 Cell: 812-320-8005


Maria was born and raised in Bloomington, graduated from BHSN and completed her bachelor's and masterМs degrees at IU. She is married to Jason Hamilton and has four children. She is a certified fitness professional through the American Council on Exercise and works at the YMCA. She took up running at age 31 and has been hooked ever since! She has been with the St. Charles XC and T&F teams in assistant and head coaching capacities since 2007.

Alex Tanford С Assistant Coach

Home: 812-332-4924 Cell: 812-325-7374


Alex grew up in North Carolina but has lived in Indiana since 1979. He teaches litigation at the IU Law School.  He is married to Philippa Guthrie and is the father of two children. He ran track in high school and college and still competes in masters track meets. He has also served in assistant and head coaching capacities at St. Charles since 2007.


The school requires:

Ь   Every student must have an athletics physical on file dated AFTER May 1, 2015

Ь   Every family must have submitted an athletics registration form and the $50 fee. This covers all children in the family for the entire school year.

Ь   Every student must pay the XC fee of $36 per child.

Fees are paid at the school office, not to the coach. School forms and information are on the St. Charles Athletic website.

CYO requires ALL athletes to be registered online at You only have to do this once per school year.

The St. Charles policy on athletic eligibility is stated in the Athletic Handbook which is available on-line through the schoolМs web site. Any child who becomes academically ineligible when mid-quarter grades come out will no longer be able to participate as a member of the XC team.


Parents are central to the success and attitude of their child. We ask for your cooperation in the following areas:


Ь    Please be responsible and respectful of our time. Get your child to practices and meets on time and pick them up on time.

Ь    Know the schedule. Read it and give us plenty of advance warning if your child will be unable to compete in a scheduled meet. Also let us know if your child will miss practice.

Ь   Regular attendance is required to be a member of the XC team. Exceptions to this will be made if your child is a multi-sport athlete.

Ь   Do not have your child leave early from practice or a meet unless there is an emergency. This is a TEAM sport. There will always be a team meeting at the end and athletes will all be dismissed at the same time. Exceptions to this rule include multi-sport athletes who need to leave to get to their other practices/games.

Ь   Please let us be the coaches. DonМt give your child specific instructions during competitions, and donМt have your child do extra workouts without consulting us first.

Ь   Insist that your child try to work out XC-related issues directly with a coach before enlisting your direct assistance.

Ь   Do not attempt to speak with a coach at length during a practice or meet. Please wait until it is over or contact the coach at another time.

All parents are expected to demonstrate the highest level of sportsmanship while representing St. Charles XC. We would like to remind you to:


Ь   Please cheer for our teamМs efforts, not just successes. Cheer for the kid who comes in last, no matter which team he/she represents.

Ь   Try to keep all comments positive and do not criticize or compare your child, his/her teammates or children from the other team.

LetМs face it -- most kids at this age want to have fun! We will demand that all the athletes work hard, but we will try to make the practices fun and engaging. You can help make it fun by emphasizing the positive aspects of participating on a team to your child!

EXPECTATIONS OF ATHLETES(Please have your child read this section with you)

All athletes should try their best, show a willingness to learn more about the sport, listen and take direction from the coaches, and always be supportive of their teammates. With a positive attitude, even during the hardest workouts, we can achieve a lot as a team and have a great season! And the bottom line isи.we want you to have FUN!

We ask the following of you to make this a good experience:


Ь   Embrace the TEAM philosophy. You should have individual goals to work towards, but in the end, we are a team and the teamМs goals must come first. For example, sometimes you may be asked to run a slower pace in order to help pull along another teammate.

Ь   We ask that ALL athletes commit to attending practice regularly and attend EVERY meet (except in the case of an illness or emergency).

Ь   If you are injured but still able to attend school, you are expected to attend a meet. However, if you stay home sick from school, the school policy states that you are not allowed to participate in a practice or meet on that day.

Ь   All members of the team will participate in every XC meet.

Ь   You will respect your coaches. That means being quiet and listening when they speak and being polite and acknowledging them outside of XC.

Ь   You will respect your opponents. No Рtrash talkП at meets. Wish your opponent good luck and shake the hand of the person who beats you.

Ь   You will respect your teammates, whether they come in first or last. You will also treat all members with respect outside of XC.

Ь   You will respect your parents. They make it possible for you to participate on the team, and they support you at the meets.

Ь   You will respect yourself, whether you come in first or last. This also means treating your body with respect С give it the rest and healthy nutrition it deserves.

Ь   You will not use profanity or coarse language or make fun of others.

PRACTICE & MEET PROTOCOL(Please have your child read this section with you)

The start of practices/meets will be signaled by the blow of the coachМs whistle. At that time, all team members must gather for the team meeting, prayer and roll call. Specific rules for practices/meets are as follows:

1.  Prompt attendance is mandatory! Arrive a few minutes early for practice. For meets, arrive one hour before the start of the meet!

2.  You are required to bring a water bottle to every practice! Sports/energy drinks are NOT necessary except in cases of extreme heat.

3.  No gum and no cell phone use during practice

4.  No jewelry during meets (except a sports watch)

5.  Pull long hair back and out of your face so you can see.

6.  Check shoelaces and use restroom beforehand.

7.  Stay for the entire meet! XC meets are much shorter than T&F meets.

All athletes are expected to have transportation to and from the meets. We will provide you with directions to away locations.


Our most important meet of the year is the all-diocese CYO championship meet. It takes place at Southeastway Park in Indianapolis. The meet takes place over two days.

Ь    Wednesday, October 7, 5:00pm - GIRLS

Ь    Thursday, October 8, 5:00pm - BOYS

Unfortunately these dates are during our Рfall breakП, so if you have travel plans that cannot be altered we understand if your child cannot make it. However, if possible, please try to plan around these dates. We build toward this event all season. The boys and girls train together as one big team, so each gender is expected to go and support the other gender on their respective race day.


When conflicts arise between XC and another sport or activity, we follow these priorities:

Ь    Athletic championships and other end-of-season finales like recitals always have priority. Our championship is the CYO meet on October 7 & 8.

Ь    Tournaments have second-highest priority. A XC team member is always excused from XC if another sport has a tournament.

Ь    XC meets have priority over practices -- even РimportantП practices.

Ь    Practices have the lowest priority, so no athlete is excused from a meet to attend a practice in another sport.


The weather is completely unpredictable in Southern Indiana. We generally practice in light rain, but not in bad weather. If a practice or a meet needs to be cancelled due to the weather, I will send an e-mail and text alert at least 45 minutes prior to the starting time. However, once in a while, the weather will turn crazy in a split second and we might have to cancel at the last minute. If practice has already started and bad weather sets in, rest assured that we will seek shelter and do our best to ensure the safety of your child. You will receive a text alert about the status of practice and informing you if you need to come early to get your child.

There will be a first aid kit on site. If your child has a serious medical problem that arises during practice, we will call 911 if no parent is present.

Younger siblings are not allowed to practice with the team. The only exception to this rule is for younger siblings who join the St. Charles Рrunning clubП program for 3rd and 4th graders and are invited to join the older kids during certain practices.



Good running shoes are important!! Lousy shoes cause most running injuries. Get a shoe designed for running, not basketball or skateboarding. It must lace tightly -- no velcro straps. We recommend the Indiana Running Company on the square. Tell them you are part of the St. Charles team to receive a 20% discount!


XC uniform tops (the same ones used for track) are required for meets. They can be purchased from Coach Tanford for $15 and are yours to keep. Any time a child outgrows his/her top, he/she can trade it in for a bigger one. Every athlete should also wear a pair of BLACK shorts with his/her top to the meets. The shorts should be lightweight and relatively short in length.


There is a strong link between good nutrition and athletic performance. We have developed some nutrition guidelines which we encourage you to follow during the season. Here are the basics:

1.  Drink lots of water throughout the week.

2.  Limit consumption of fast food and processed food.

3.  Do not eat snacks within an hour before running.

4.  Avoid soda, energy drinks/gum and sports drinks. Lebron James doesnМt actually drink Gatorade during games; he drinks water in Gatorade cups.

5.  Athletes need to eat and drink something as soon as possible following every workout and competition to help recovery. Chocolate milk is good.



It can be very challenging to juggle family, personal, and professional obligations, and we know that transportation might be an issue for some of you, especially for away meets. Please donМt let this affect your decision about whether or not your child is able to participate in this program. St. Charles parents and coaches are always willing to work together to make it work for everyone. However, please try to make arrangements in advance and not concern the coaches with transportation issues the day of a meet.


We are always looking for parents to help run and walk (yes, we need walkers!) with the team. If you would like to be more involved, email Coach Hamilton. All volunteers are required to complete a 45-minute online training called РSafe and Sacred.П It was implemented by the Archdiocese in 2013 for the care and protection of our children.

Parents are expected to help with timing, scoring and other duties when we host a home meet. It takes a lot of people to make a meet go smoothly!

St. Charles Cross Country Student/Parent Agreement - 2015

(for a printable version of this page, click here)

We have a copy of the St. Charles Cross Country Parent/Student Handbook 2015, and we have read it in its entirety. We understand and intend to follow the above St. Charles XC policies and expectations to the best of our abilities.

We understand that participation on this team requires every athlete to attend EVERY meet. The coach will only make an exception to this rule in case of illness or emergency or if you already know ahead of time that there is a schedule conflict. If there is, please circle below the date of the meet for which your child will NOT be available.

Saturday, August 22 С 9:00am С AWAY - Jackson Creek Invite @ JCMS

Tuesday, August 25 - 5:30pm - HOME v. JCMS/Batchelor

Thursday, August 27 - 4:30pm - AWAY @ Brown County

Tuesday, September 8 - 5:30pm - AWAY @ Tri North

Thursday, September 17 - 4:30pm - AWAY - Shawswick/Oolitic @ Oolitic

Thursday, September 24 - 5:30pm - AWAY @ Edgewood

Monday, September 28 - 6:00pm - Columbus North/JCMS @ Columbus Northside

Tuesday, September 29 - 5:00pm - High School County meet (we will attend as a team)

Thursday, October 1 - 4:30pm - HOME v. LCA/St. Vincent

Wednesday, October 7 - 5:00pm - GIRLS - CYO Meet @ Southeastway Park in Indy

Thursday,, October 8 - 5:00pm - BOYS - CYO Meet @ Southeastway Park in Indy

Finally, athletes agree to consult me before running any 5k road races (i.e., Hoosiers Outrun Cancer). We need to minimize overuse injuries and maximize performance during the season. Adjustments in training may need to be made if kids are running additional races.


Printed Player Name Player Signature Date


Printed Parent Name Parent Signature Date