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Drew Carlson Headed To St. Bonaventure University

Flanked by his family, Jamestown High School senior Drew Carlson, seated middle, signs his letter of intent to continue his running and academic career at St. Bonaventure University in the fall. Joining him in the first row, from the left, are brother Michael, mother Kristy, father Dusty and brother Jack. Standing, from the left, are Jamestown assistant cross country coach Tony Dolce, cross country and boys track head coach Steve Sipior, modified boys/girls cross country coach Cristin Hockenberry and athletic director Ben Drake. P-J photo by Scott Kindberg

Drew Carlson hoped he could parlay his outstanding cross country season last fall into an opportunity to continue running in college.

That dream of the Jamestown High School senior was realized last Friday when he officially announced his intention to attend St. Bonaventure University in the fall.

“I’m just super excited to compete on a college level, especially at a Division I level,” Carlson said. “It’s definitely going to be a change, because usually I’m not really practicing and training with people better than me. Now that I have the competition I’m really hoping to improve myself a lot.”

His resume would indicate he’s ready for the Division I challenge.

Consider what Carlson did for the Red Raiders in 2020:

Among Drew Carlson’s many personal highlights last fall was finishing first at the CCAA Championships. P-J file photo

¯ Set the Jamestown 5K course record (16:44).

¯ Placed first in the Chautauqua-Cattaraugus Athletic Association All-Star race.

¯ Finished first in the CCAA Championships.

¯ Claimed second place in the Section VI Class A state qualifier.

¯ Chosen Jamestown’s Most Outstanding Performer for the fourth straight season.

Carlson, the son of Dusty and Kristy, called the journey to the Olean campus a “four-year struggle,” admitting that it left him wondering if he was “going to run in college” and “is anyone going to want me?”

And even though COVID-19 hit, eliminating his spring track season and causing unexpected challenges during his fall cross country campaign, he said he’s “signed and ready to go.”

Noted Jamestown cross country and boys track coach Steve Sipior: “St. Bonaventure is getting a heck of a runner and Drew’s going to get a heck of an education. It’s wonderful. Kids always dream about doing sports in college, so it’s cool when someone you’ve seen from eighth grade on is going to be running at a university.”

Fittingly, St. Bonaventure was the first school to reach out to Carlson last year.

“They were behind me from the beginning,” said Carlson, who will major in business. “I would have never thought in 100 years that I’d be running cross country (when he was a child). To be running it in college at that level is just insane.”

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