International Cross Country Champion to Compete at 2015 Simplot Games

For Immediate Release

Date: February 17, 2015
Contact: Amanda Bennett 208-242-3517

International Cross Country Champion to Compete at 2015 Simplot Games

Pocatello, Idaho – Makena Morley, of Big Fork, Montana, is looking forward to her second Simplot Games appearance, where she will join over 2,000 other high school athletes from around the country and from Canada, Mexico, and Australia. The Games will be held February 19–21, 2015, at Idaho State University’s Holt Arena.

Morley won the Bupa Great Edinburgh Cross Country International Challenge held in Scotland on January 10, 2015. She was one of three high school girls selected to represent Team USA in the junior women’s 4-K event. Morley placed third at the Foot Locker Nationals competition earlier in the season, which put her in a good position for selection to the Team USA spot to compete in Edinburgh.

Of the experience, Morley said, “It was amazing to be able to compete for Team USA and be with the other junior teammates.”

Morley, a senior at Big Fork High School, is committed to the University of Montana and will compete on their cross country team and for their track and field team in the winter and spring. She was named the Montana Gatorade Girls Cross-Country Runner of the Year in the 2013/2014 season and in the 2014/2015 season. She is also a four-time Foot Locker Cross Country qualifier and has won four straight individual state cross country championships.

Morley will bring her winning speed and determination to the 2015 Simplot Games, where she will compete in the 3200 meter event. She won the same race at last year’s games with a time of 10:34. This year she is looking to break the meet record of 10:32, set in 2000 by Emily Kroshus of Calgary, Alberta.

Morley’s race at last year’s Games was only her second time running indoors and her first time on a wood-banked track.

“Simplot Games last year was really fun and it was awesome to run indoors, where [the race] goes by a lot faster,” says Morley.

She liked the short wood track, which felt bouncy and fast to her, and she looks forward to running on it again this weekend.

Morley will be joined at this year’s Simplot Games by her brother, Logan, and her sister, Bryn who will also compete. Making the Games a true family event, their dad Steve, will compete in the coaches race. He still holds the Big Fork High School record for the 400 meters.

More than 2,000 athletes will come from across the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Australia to participate in the 37th annual Simplot Games. Simplot Games remains the nation’s premier high school indoor track and field event. Sponsored by the J.R. Simplot Company since 1979, the Simplot Games are held at Idaho State University’s Holt Arena in Pocatello, Idaho.

For more information on Simplot Games, please visit our website at You may also contact Lisa Woodland at (208) 235-5673 or Simplot Games Media Team at

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