Amongst all of the sights, sounds and excitement observed during pre-meet anticipation last Saturday at the debut installment of the OHSAA State Cross Country Championships in Obetz was a runner getting loosened up for the day's opening race who was sporting eye-catching warm-up wear.
Where exactly did the vintage wear come from?
"The shirt was my dad's from back in his junior season when he was representing South Range and he actually wore it at the state meet that year," said Bush.
Spencer's dad, Mark Bush, who now coaches at South Range was a 1984 graduate and concluded his XC career for the school during the 1983 fall campaign. During the 1982 year, Bush clocked 16:05 en route to a 10th place finish in the Class A Individual Qualifiers race at the Ohio State University Golf Course.
"My dad and I are very close, so I decided to wear his jersey during my warm-up as a tribute," Bush said.
Bush, a self-proclaimed 'grinder' out in the cross country fields indicated that he also felt the look of the jersey is representative of his running style and what he's been through.
"I've dealt with some nagging hip injuries during my upperclassman years and flu-like symptoms earlier in my senior season, so I felt comfortable getting warmed-up in a raggedy old jersey because that's kind of what I felt like," Bush joked.
Once the gun sounded, however, Bush's performance was far from raggedy. He stayed controlled during the early stages of the race and avoided the temptation to get out too fast. Ultimately he clocked even splits on his way to a 4th place showing in a new PR time of 15:43.90.
"I was really happy with my race and I'd have to say that my result exceeded my expectations," said Bush.
"My plan was to lay it on the line and I did just that and couldn't be happier with the outcome," he remarked.
Due to the aforementioned health struggles, Bush only lined-up twice prior to the state meet, at District GlenOak and Boardman Region, so it's quite likely that he took some of his fellow Division 3 competitors by surprise.
As far as what's next for Bush, the plan is to have a successful senior track season and then, ideally, continue his athletics career in college. He informed MileSplit Ohio that he's currently undecided on which college he'll be attending, but that he's very interested in competing at the next level.