IF YOU ARE LOOKING FOR BAYTOWN LEE'S SARAH SALINAS, TRY OUTSIDE FIRST.
The senior is not your "typical teenager" absorbed by the social media fandom of Twitter, TikTok or SnapChat. Instead, she enjoys the outdoors.
Which is perfect being a cross country, track and soccer standout for the Ganders.
"I like to hunt and fish. I like to be outside a lot," Salinas said. "I'm hardly on my phone, I don't play [video] games, I'm always outside. Playing soccer, running or just going to the park riding my bike."
Last season, Salinas carried the banner for Lee XC finishing 12th at the District Meet, just missing a Regional slot by two runners.
Her goal in 2021 will be to break her personal-best 20:57 and make it to Regionals. But she will have to do that without big brother, Derek, who also ran cross country and graduated this past year.
"It's a little different, I'm used to always having someone with me," Salinas said. "Wherever I go, I always had someone to comfort me and talk to me before the race. He would tell me how to strategize it. This year, I'm just going at it alone. I'm trying to think for myself and how to run smart.
"Derek taught me how to breathe correctly. He taught me my form. How smart it is for me to have a strong posture and hold myself longer. How to breathe through the heat. Also, my mental drive to keep going."
When her cross country season ends, the switch flips to soccer, which running those long distances in the summer and August heat pays off on the pitch.
"Cross country helps me with my conditioning, helps me with my stamina, my drive, my sprints, my long distance," Salinas said. "It all comes into play for me to go up for 90-plus minutes. It helps me stay in the game longer."
Outside of running, playing soccer, hunting, fishing or biking around, Salinas helps with local food drives when she can to give back.
"It's a good feeling. You see people and that they need help," Salinas said. "So, it feels nice whenever you know your help is going to a good cause."