Madison Sylvester, an 8th-grader in ~ Saginaw White Pine center School, was operation over by a deer during a cross nation invitational Saturday, Sept. 25, in ~ Delta College. (Photo and also permission indigenous Josh Sylvester)



When her classmates sing “Maddie got run end by a reindeer” or when the coach says the team is walk to try to operation sprints quicker than a fearful deer or as soon as a girlfriend brings end a stuffed deer, Madison Sylvester can laugh.

You are watching: Cross country runner gets hit by deer

The 13-year-old Saginaw White jaw eighth-grader no laughing Saturday 1 ½ miles into the Al Kayner Invitational in ~ Delta College.

“I saw the deer the end of the edge of my eye,” Sylvester said. “I assumed it could go behind me. When it struggle me, ns knew what happened. It was scary.”

There weren’t plenty of giggles Saturday when an adult doe, weighing about 130 pounds, collided with Sylvester 1.5 miles into the 2-mile race, knocking her to the ground prior to running off.

“When that happened, anyone freaked out,” White pine cross nation coach Brian Wilson said. “I’ve viewed Facebook videos posted end the year of deer colliding through runners. Room those videos true? i don’t know.

“But i do know it happens. It occurred to Madison. She bubbly, a great student, a hard worker. However when the happened, she was in shock … disbelief.”

Her father, mockery Sylvester, is also a runner, together is she sister, Maegan, that was about 10 feet behind Madison when the collision happened.

“It could have to be ugly,” josh Sylvester said. “The messed-up part is the they all witnessed it coming, including her. Madison experienced it coming through the woods. She expected it to zig-zag. Once a deer gets scared, it starts the zig-zag stuff. However it didn’t. The barreled ideal over her.

“Her sister, Maegan, was trailing 10 feet behind and saw the totality thing. Apparently, the deer struggle her directly in the side, knocked she off balance, climate picked her up and also threw her before running off.”

Maegan Sylvester and a runner from Midland Jefferson stopped to help. An adult supervisor come to assist and said the other two runners to end up the race. Maegan finished the race and also found her dad.


Maegan Sylvester, left, and Madison Sylvester room runners on the Saginaw White Pine middle School cross nation team. Madison Sylvester collided with a deer, finishing her run at Delta university Saturday, Sept. 25. (Photo and permission from Josh Sylvester)

“Maegan was just hysterical,” mockery Sylvester said. “She had actually this watch on her face that was scary. I began running. I told the coach, and also we all had this deer-in-the-headlights look. It to be scary for that an initial hour or so.”

Sylvester was standing 5-foot tall and also weighs roughly 100 pounds. She was no match for a sprinting deer. She inquiry to end up the race, yet her father carried her the remainder of the way.

“She’s not allowed to operation now, even though she desires to,” mock Sylvester said. “As shortly as we obtained home, she wanted to walk to her football game, which to be in 2 hours. The was a no. Then she claimed she had to operation tomorrow. The was a no.

“I was in panic mode as a parent. I told her she to be going come be among those rare stories. That happens, as freaky as it might seem. However deer panic, as with we might panic. It’s an excellent to watch her taking it lightly. The was mine concern. Space you walking to it is in the target of everybody’s jokes or space you going to take it well? She’s taking it well.”

While deer-runner collisions room rare, it didn’t really surprised Josh Sylvester, that runs consistently in the Saginaw area.

“I see them every the time when I’m running,” mockery Sylvester said. “We’re in your playground. This is their nation we’re to run in. We’re simply guests. Even on the nice, paved Saginaw valley Rail Trail, I’ll see them popular music up your heads and just look at me. Friend get very close to them. It’s a matter of simply keeping her distance.”

To add insult come injury, Madison Sylvester thought she was on her means to a an individual record when the collision happened. She has, however, reached among her goals, with a personal record of 14:40, which allows her to operation in the heritage PROM cross nation run Saturday, Oct. 3.

“Psychologically, it might slow she down,” josh Sylvester said. “You can’t say that you won’t think about it. The going come be one of those things. Delta’s course has a lot of trees, so even if you try not come think around it, it’s going to put your head top top a swivel. That’s not just how you’re trained together a runner. You placed the blinders on.”

Madison Sylvester expects to get the all-clear with time to operation in the Oct. 30 race. The was one of her purposes this season.

“I’m more than likely going to it is in nervous,” Madison Sylvester said. “It’s something the we can laugh around now, but when ns racing again, i’m going to be nervous.”

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