Lawrence moves up the all-time cross country list for the Oilers

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FINDLAY, Ohio (WTVG) - In her first race in her sophomore season, Gabrielle Lawrence already has a top-five time in school history. This mark really was not on her radar when she came to campus.

"As I've been here, I've kind of formed those goals and I've seen it," Lawrence said. "Now, I kind of have more goals as far as school times and stuff are concerned. But initially it kind of happened I guess."

Second-year University of Findlay head cross country coach Eric Wymer says Lawrence "just grinds."

"I think her biggest downfall which could be a strength of hers as well is she doesn't like to not do what is asked of her," Wymer said. "Like if I say, 'Hey, this is how many reps we're doing for a workout today,' she is going to get to that amount whether she feels good or not which isn't always great because sometimes we need to listen to our body."

The discipline Lawrence keeps might have something to do with the schedule she has running around Findlay.

About six days a week before sunrise, Lawrence is at the University of Findlay horse barn south of town. She is a Equine Studies major and with that role there is a barn to sweep and horses to maintain.

Lawrence is also a practicing member of Findlay's eventing team and one of her horses bit her wrists twice two weeks ago. Fortunately, you do not need your wrists to run.

"With horses, it is already you've gotta be super cautious," Lawrence said. "You've gotta be paying attention all the time."

This is a double life this sophomore from Massacusettes lives on Findlay's campus as those at the horse barn do not know much about Lawrence's running abilities.

"I actually know very little other than she's very extremely active in it and she's very talented in it," University of Findlay Director of Western Riding Art O'Brien said. "She spends a lot of time with it."

From boots to running shoes, her freshman year barn commitment was in the afternoon conflicting with cross country practice causing Lawrence to spend about 50 percent of the time primarily training on her own.

Now, Lawrence is back training with her teammates as she tries to get faster.

"It's definitely helped cause you want to improve not only yourself but now them too," Lawrence said. "You know they're working just as hard as you are so you just want to do your best for the team."

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