Crossing the finish line of the seven miles road march, Spc. Cassie Kogle of Adamsfriendship, Wis., found herself drenched with sweat and rain, but motivated by a slew of senior enlisted leaders and senior noncommissioned officers.

"I appreciate the sergeants major help and other sergeants," Kogle said. "That help is important and having people there to support always feels better at the end."

Kogle is one of nine Soldiers competing in the 80th Training Command Best Warrior Competition hosted by the 102nd Training Division (MS) at Fort Leonard Wood, Mo., April 16-20.

"This event has definitely been a challenge especially the road march," she said. "If it wasn't for the support for the leadership and my sponsor I wouldn't be here."

Sgt. Angelo Williams, Kogle's sponsor and a previous 2012 best warrior competitor, attests to the fact that it takes lots of preparation and motivation to compete in a best warrior competition.

"Soldiers have to be motivated and have to want it to compete," he said. "If you don't have the drive and motivation it's pointless to tryout because motivation is key."

During the competition, competitors are expected to test their basic Soldiering skills in different Army Warrior Tasks and are tested in ten different categories such as leadership, code of conduct, Army history, and Army programs.

"It behooves any Soldier interested in trying for best warrior to start training at least a year in advance."