CARTHAGE, Mo. — Sometimes it takes two things to make a thing go right. For Carthage twin runners Jazuri and Jenari Lopez it takes both of them to make running go right.
“Running by ourselves is not easy at all,” Jazuri said. “Like we should have someone with us to help us and always talk to us, and it’s pretty nice having her.”
They’ve had each other ever since the very beginning. They run cross country. It’s a team sport, and this is their own team.
The race they are on is unique. At the start, the focus was soccer. Cross country was just used as a bridge between the two to stay in shape, but then something changed for one and the other followed right behind.
“Senior year I told myself if I medaled in state then I would run in college,” Jenari said. “But if I didn’t maybe I’d try something else, maybe play soccer in college, but I ended up medaling so I’m like, ‘OK, I guess I’m going to start running.”
The path may have changed but the duo still had their sights set on the end. They’re on a path that no one in their family has been down before. Both sisters played soccer, ran cross country, and now both are going to be the first to go to college.
“It’s really important for us to go to college,” Jenari said. “Like that’s kind of how we pay our parents back with their hard work because they’ve put their time and effort to us so we’re trying to pay that back to them by going to college.”
It’ll be different. But what will stay the same is their ambition. And just like they’ve ran side by side since the start, they’ll finish that way too.
“It’s just I want to make my parents proud,” Jazuri said. “Like I’ve worked so hard and I have so much more to do.”