SPRING HILL — Kelsey Carbajo was named the Kansas Cross Country and Track Coaches Association coach of the year.
Carbajo is the head girls cross country coach at Olathe West High School. She was named the Class 6A coach of the year.
Carbajo led the Olathe West High School Owls to second place in the Class 6A state meet in Lawrence in November.
She was named the coach of the year in December. Carbajo was presented with the award on Saturday, Jan. 4.
Carbajo was also named the Kansas City Metro All-Metro Girls Cross Country Coach of the Year. She was presented with the Metro coach of the year honors during a program at St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Overland Park on Sunday, Nov. 24.
She is a graduate of Spring Hill High School where she ran cross country, played volleyball, basketball and track and field.
Carbajo did two sports in the fall for the Lady Broncos, competing in cross country and volleyball.
“We have a very talented group of kids at Olathe West,” Carbajo said. “Our cross country team is more like a family.
“The kids enjoy encouraging each other and working hard,” she said. “They made our jobs as coaches pretty easy.”
Kelsey Carbajo was assisted on the team by her sister Macy Carbajo, who also ran cross country and track for the Lady Broncos.
Kelsey and Macy are daughters of Tom and Janel Carbajo of Spring Hill. Tom and Janel taught and coached in the Spring Hill school district for many years.
“My greatest thrill as a coach is to see the kids get out of their comfort zone and working hard together to achieve their goals,” Kelsey Carbajo said. “These kids have such a bright future. I cannot wait to watch them grow as student-athletes over the years.
“I feel like I have the dream job, getting to coach with my sister Macy,” she said. “We get to be around kids who love the sport that helped shape us as adults and share that experience with them.”
Kelsey Carbajo has been coaching cross country and track and field for four years. She has been at Olathe West for three years and this was her second season as head coach.
Carbajo has also been an assistant basketball coach.
Carbajo makes a difference with the student-athletes because her heart and soul is in the sport, Olathe West High School Principal Jay Novacek said.“Coach Kelsey Carbajo is one of the most passionate individuals I have ever met,” he said.Carbajo was named the Kansas Cross Country and Track and Field Association assistant track coach of the year at Olathe West High School in 2017.
Carbajo helped lead the Olathe West High School Lady Owls to the league championship, the first ever for the girls cross country program.
The Lady Owls placed third in the Class 6A regionals, qualifying for the state meet. Olathe West placed second in the state cross country meet held at Rim Rock Farm in Lawrence.