Sierra Lutheran’s Jared Marchegger beats scoliosis for outstanding prep career

Jared Marchegger has had a historic career for Sierra Lutheran.

Jared Marchegger has had a historic career for Sierra Lutheran.

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Maybe it is appropriate where Jared Marchegger has accomplished unprecedented success has always come with its share of curves and hills.

Marchegger has always been a runner and he wasn’t going to let scoliosis stop him. It’s difficult enough to stand and sit for those with scoliosis, which is a condition that causes a curvature in the spine, let alone running 3200 meters.

But thanks to a grueling regimen, Marchegger hasn’t let his scoliosis stop him and despite having the condition he’s become the most successful runner in the 3200 in state history.

Marchegger just completed his career at Sierra Lutheran High School by becoming the only runner in Nevada history to win four state titles in the 3200. He won 12 state titles in track and cross country during his career.

He capped his cross country career last fall by winning the state title with the fastest time of all the classes. He was named Nevada’s Gatorade Athlete of the Year in cross country after winning the state title last fall.

Marchegger proceeded to donate the $1,000 grant he received for being named Gatorade Athlete of the Year to the Carson Valley Trails Association.

“I live near the Clear Creek Trail,” Marchegger said. “They built that trail. It was the first trail I ran on. It’s the go-to trail that I use. I’ve been very grateful to have that trail there.”

Marchegger was diagnosed with scoliosis during the summer of 2015 after completing eighth grade at Bethlehem Lutheran School in Carson City.

At the time he had a 17 percent curvature of the spine. He now has a 42 percent curvature of the spine. “It’s grown a bit,” he said.

But since he’s stopped growing it’s believed the curvature of his spine has also stopped. “I’m done, hopefully,” Marchegger said.

He will see a doctor in San Francisco in July to see if the curvature of his spine has indeed stopped. He travels to San Francisco to monitor his scoliosis once or twice a year. “It’s annoying to stand up and sit for long periods of time,” said Marchegger, adding it can be painful on his back.

Scoliosis is genetic. “It runs in my family,” Marchegger said. But just because he found out he had scoliosis, he said that wasn’t going to stop him from running.

So he’s been on a grueling regimen in which he sees coach Matt Pendola in Reno four times a week. Pendola has come up with a training plan of strength exercises and physical therapy Marchegger follows. Marchegger has a daily routine he follows every morning. “My back won’t hurt if I do all the stuff correctly,” he said.

Through it all, Marchegger has been able to maintain a 3.8 grade point average in high school and a 4.0 G.P.A. his senior year while volunteering at his church, Corpus Christi Church south of Carson City.

He also earned a scholarship to the University of Nevada where he’ll run with the men’s cross country team this fall during its inaugural season. “I’ve always wanted to run for UNR,” said Marchegger, who added running in college was one of the goals he set when he was a freshman.

Marchegger plans to major in business with an emphasis in economics. While Nevada doesn’t have a men’s track team, Marchegger plans to compete in five track meets unattached during track season while he’s at the school.

“I’m definitely happy with what I’ve done in high school,” Marchegger said. “I made a bunch of goals my freshman year. I’ve accomplished all of them.”


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