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Even with no team, Bethany Davis found a reason to run

July 25, 2014 | Irene Kanthan

For three years, Bethany Davis ran 30 to 40 miles each week, even though she was no longer part of a cross county team. Something was urging her on.

“I turned down scholarships to run collegiately,” says Davis, who felt like Central Bible College was where she was supposed to be.

“CBC did not have a team, so I was unable to compete. It was a huge dream to let go of, but my passion for running was never lost. I kept running for the enjoyment of it.”

Davis had successfully competed throughout high school back home in Indiana. So when CBC merged with Evangel University last year, she decided to try out for Evangel’s cross-country team.

“Being part of the team made the transition to Evangel easier,” she says.

Coach Lynn Bowen was impressed by how much mileage she had been getting in during the years she was not competing. “Bethany was still running up to 40 miles a week,” he says.

Her personal training paid off, and Davis started setting records.

“The first goal I had when I ran for EU was to break my high school time of 19 minutes and 46 seconds,” Davis says. She achieved that goal — in her first race — by 38 seconds.

Soon, she broke Evangel’s 5K record at a mid-state meet, and last fall, she represented EU in the 2013 NAIA National Cross-Country Championship.

“I’m so grateful that I have the opportunity to be part of an organized team again,” she says.

Always driven to excel, the senior psychology major has sustained that same passion in all areas of her university career, with or without teammates or fans to cheer her on.

Davis plans to go the distance and pursue a master’s degree in psychology at Evangel starting in the fall.

“Bethany still has three years of eligibility left,” says Bowen. “I am sure it helps her to know that she will continue to be a scholarship runner for Evangel.”

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