BETHALTO - Mark Benson Eldridge, a senior cross country, is the November Male Athlete of the Month for Civic Memorial High School.

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Eldridge is coached by Jake Peal. Eldridge has run cross country since seventh grade.

"I would like to thank my dad. He was the one who told me I should start running, I could hardly run a mile if he didn't tell me I could be good at it. He was actually the distance coach at the middle school. Since then he's kept me on the horse and made sure I didn't quit."

"I have qualified for sectionals every year of high school. I was an all-county athlete for the last few years, and I made all-region this year."

Athlete of the Month is sponsored by

Eldridge is not sure if he will run cross country in college. He would like to major in music education.

Sports have helped him develop into the person he is today by helping him with time management, he said. He also plays in the band at Civic Memorial and also runs track.

A fun fact about Eldridge is he originally got into running when he joined the 24-Hour Run challenge that his middle school used to host.

"Everyone would split into teams of about 15-20 and for 24 hours one person on each team would be running. My dad came to watch and he saw me running and told me I could be good at it and I should join the track team. It really wasn't my idea to start, but I'm really really glad I did."'s Athlete of the Month Program is made possible by the generosity of our sponsors and the cooperation of our area high schools. This is a great accomplishment and one to be very proud of. Please join us in congratulating this young athlete. We at wish you continued success in your future!

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