Moriah Steinbrecher and her teammate Catelin King embracing at the finish of the 2022 Washington State Cross-Country Championships
As a freshman, I
remember meeting Moriah Steinbrecher on the first day of summer cross-country
I was immediately struck by Moriah's outgoing nature, enthusiasm, and questions about a sport she had never tried.
When Moriah entered high school, I would not have guessed that a runner with no experience would finish her career as a captain and leader of a three-time state championship cross-country team.
Then again, Moriah is highly successful at anything she sets her mind to in life. Moriah's determination and positive outgoing outlook are a blessing to watch day in and day out.
Moriah is super humble and one the best encouragers I’ve seen in a high school leader who cheers for her team and other teams in practice and at races.
I’ve received feedback from other coaches and parents about Moriah’s outstanding sportsmanship.
Let's look at some things Moriah has accomplished during her tenure at JPII. Again, you wouldn't know these things if I did not write a post because Moriah is humble and other-centered.
Moriah has a 4.0 GPA, with an incredible unweighted GPA of 4.82. Moriah challenges herself by taking many of the most demanding classes possible in her college prep school.
Moriah also serves as the National Honor Society Vice-President.
I only learned about Moriah's incredible GPA after writing about her. Her humility is a part of who she is as an outstanding student, great athlete, and volunteer in many areas of life.
Moriah was a Captain of the school cross-country team for a good reason. She has led her team to three consecutive Washington State High School cross-country championships. She is also part of the team that won two Washington State High School Academic Cross-country championships. Moriah's team had the highest GPA in their classification in the State of Washington. Last year as a junior, her team won the state championship in track and field.
The teams Moriah was on also won two league sportsmanship titles, as voted by the league coaches.
Moriah displays excellent leadership on the team and has many leadership skills well beyond her age.
She mentors other student-athletes, helps with team goal-setting, and encourages others to be a champion on and off the field.
For example, at our team camp each year, Moriah gathers the girl's team and asks them for input on goals for the upcoming season. She then works with the team to design a plan to meet or exceed team goals. I give the captains general direction; they take the baton and develop a plan they can own and manage.
Moriah has developed a barrier-breaking mindset through her athletic and other high school experiences. She is not satisfied with the status quo. She constantly looked for ways to improve her performance on and off the field, yet she balances this with giving and serving others.
Moriah will become a barrier-breaker for good leading first-ever projects when she eventually enters the workplace. She is innovative and not afraid to give it her all.
Moriah consistently gives herself to causes that are important to her. For example, Moriah volunteers in a Men's Homeless Shelter preparing and serving food, was a teen leader on mission trips to Juarez, Mexico, and has helped serve in Youth Migrant service projects. Moriah is also a part of the Multicultural Club at school, the Prayer group, and the Green Club. Finally, Moriah is a youth leader in her Church Vacation Bible School.
Moriah has strong academic credentials, is other-centered, believes in changing the status quo for good, and has strong leadership skills beyond her age.
Moriah’s Mom, Diane Steinbrecher. has some final words about Moriah as she enters the next chapters of life.
“Moriah entered JPII as a fiercely competitive homeschooled soccer player, always at the top of her class (class size: 1, haha) and loving the immediate rewards of soccer.
Enter long-distance running; grueling but somehow reaches down to the core foundation of your human person and reveals a depth and strength you didn't know existed. With the greatest mentors in coaches and friends, Mo learned to see her God-given potential and set goals. She received daily support, encouragement, and problem-solving in the rough times and saw her value as a team member.
She learned to persevere, win with grace, lose with grace, and help others to know grace; all the while having outrageous fun. Her motivating quote became, "You were not made for comfort; you were made for greatness" (Pope Benedict XVI).
As Moriah bravely heads to Utah State, away from all family and friends, do I think she'll be successful? Heck, yeah! I know she has the breadth and depth to enter in, persevere, give every ounce of herself, live her faith out loud, and bring crazy fun and camaraderie to every new situation. I am so, so grateful to JPII, especially the running community, for funneling the fierceness and growing the greatness”.
Perhaps my greatest memory of Moriah forever will be during the 2022 state cross-country championships. Her care for her teammates in adversity showed her amazing grace, character, and incredible love for others.
If you ever get a chance, read the story about the JPII 2022 Girls Cross-Country Team.
Moriah, we will miss you, your laughter, your sense of humor, and most of all, the love you've shown all around you!
Moriah and her teammates are celebrating their third consecutive Washington State Cross-Country Championship.