Bonsall

Scottsboro’s Noah Bonsall will run cross country for UNA starting this fall.

 

When Noah Bonsall was considering his college cross country options, he wanted to run for a program that enjoyed a high level of team chemistry like the one he was part of at Scottsboro High School.

Bonsall found that type of team chemistry at the University of North Alabama in Florence.

Bonsall recently signed to run cross country for UNA during a signing ceremony at Scottsboro High School.

Bonsall was a six-year runner for the Wildcats and played a role in the program’s five consecutive state championships (four in Class 5A and one in 6A). But Bonsall said it was the bonds and friendships he made that were the most enjoyable part of the program. He believes he’s found a similar approach to the sport at UNA, saying team chemistry at UNA is at “ an astronomically high level. Coach (Jeremy) Provence really cares about his athletes and their training and all the guys seemed to care about each other.”

UNA competes in the Atlantic Sun Conference. The Lions’ roster features another Scottsboro product, Devin Berry, who hosted Bonsall for a weekend visit back in March.

“Coach Provence called said he was interested in me running for them,” Bonsall said. “They had a home meet in March so I went, stayed the weekend and met all the guys. I decided that was where I wanted to go.”

Bonsall ran cross country and track and field at Scottsboro but said it wasn’t until the spring of his junior year that he believed running at the collegiate level “was a possibility. After I realized that, I knew that was what I wanted to do and I worked hard to pursue it.”

Bonsall drew interest from 15-plus schools before narrowing his choices to UNA, UAH and Auburn-Montgomery before his weekend in Florence last spring sold him on the Lions.

He’s looking forward to the challenge that the collegiate level presents, as races are 8K (five miles) instead of 5K.

“The training is a lot more in volume at the collegiate level,” said Bonsall, who plans to major in exercise science and later attend physical therapy school.

As for his Scottsboro career, Bonsall described it as “unreal.”

“At Scottsboro, those guys were my brothers. My best friends were on the team and we all went through everything together,” he said. “Coach Rob (head coach Luke Robinson) has been awesome. He came in my eighth-grade year and really made (the last five years) something special. It’s crazy to think of the success we’ve had.”

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