E.A. Sports Today

Cowboy Cub

Alexandria senior Lane Trapp is the genuine article, applying the tenets of the cowboy lifestyle to all he does

Lane Trapp's dad Shane (orange shirt) checks the time as Lane comes up on the two-mile marker in the Creekbank Invitational.

Lane Trapp’s dad Shane (orange shirt) checks the time as Lane comes up on the two-mile marker in the Creekbank Invitational.

By Al Muskewitz
East Alabama Sports Today

It’s been said by those who know that you can spot a K-mart cowboy a mile away. That all-hat, no-cattle kind of guy who looks like he just stepped out of a western wear catalog with pointy-toed boots so sharp they could kill a cockroach in a corner and doesn’t know the business end of a bull from a hole in the ground.

Well, if you spend any time around Alexandria sports you can spot the real thing from that far, too.

Valley Cubs senior Lane Trapp is the genuine article, a living, breathing, ropin’ and ridin’ cowboy, a dawn-to-dusk worker with the callouses and bruises – and results – to prove it. When he wears the hat, which is every day, he means it.

“He’s 100 percent the real deal when it comes to this cowboy stuff,” Valley Cubs cross country coach Phillip Hartsfield said. “That’s who he is, that’s his comfort zone. A lot people think it’s a show, but I see him at practice, at school — it’s the real deal.

“He has a cowboy hat that he wears everywhere he goes. He’ll run through practice and have his shorts and socks and shoes and as soon as he gets done, he goes over to his dually truck, puts his cowboy hat on and walks on.”

He’s not a lonesome cowboy, either. Around school they know him by several names – Wrangler, Roper, Slim, Cowboy. He’s heard them all and takes offense to none.

“I’m proud to be a cowboy,” Trapp said. “It’s influenced me a lot. It taught me how to work hard and train hard and value everything. It’s taught me a lot.”

It takes a lot more than a fancy hat and a pickup truck to make a country boy a cowboy. It’s a lifestyle, and Trapp lives it. He’s up early at home to work the animals, he ropes and rides – well, used to before he got involved in high school sports – and remains committed to that way in every aspect of his life.

His father, Shane, was a winning bull rider who tried his hand on the PBR circuit. Lane himself was a “half decent” junior rodeo star before high school sports grabbed his attention, mainly steer roping and bull riding; whether he resumes those pursuits after his high school days are done remains to be seen.

It’s that cowboy work ethic, and deep-rooted faith, that has carried him to great heights as a runner and wrestler. He went 60-9 in finishing third at 113 in the Class 1A-5A state wrestling championship last winter and he’s the favorite to win Tuesday’s Calhoun County Cross Country Meet.

Going the extra mile is not just an expression to Trapp. It’s not uncommon for him to run a race in the morning, then put in more miles later in the day. He’ll be the first one done with his workout then go back out to run with the others, not to show out but to encourage those who might be lagging behind.

“He’s the hardest worker I’ve ever been around,” Hartsfield said. “I said to somebody just the other day what am I going to do without Lane next year because for two years we’ve done this he’s been a part of it; I kind of lean on him to be the leader. When we start up next year and Lane Trapp is not there, it’s going to be different.”

“He is the most driven and motivated young man,” wrestling coach Frank Hartzog said. “He has the ability to understand that success comes with sacrifice and willfully gives complete commitment to everything he does.”

This cowboy rides fast and he runs fast, too. The last three times he ran the Oxford Lake course where Tuesday’s meet will be held finished fourth in Ohatchee’s Creekbank Invitational, won Oxford’s Waffle House Invitational and finished third in the County (behind champion Zebedee Lunsford of Anniston and Ohatchee’s Jimmy Wilson, both of whom also return).

The boys race Tuesday is expected to be tight.

“I want to win this year; I know it sounds bad (brash), but I want to win,” Trapp said. “I figure the best way to win is practice hard. The person who practices the most and the hardest and wants it the most is the one who gets it.”

Lane Trapp gets his horse, Dynamite, ready for a ride.

Lane Trapp gets his horse, Dynamite, ready for a ride.

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