The most lethal kick of the weekend belonged to Glenbard West (IL) High sophomore Katelynne Hartin the girls 1-mile at New Balance on Sunday.
With Northern (PA) High sophomore Marlee Starliper commanding much of the race from the front over the first seven and a half laps, a secondary pack emerged with Hart and Greencastle (PA) High's Taryn Parks.
Hart initially had to navigate that struggle -- and probably added about meters to her race -- the race's first six and a half laps before realizing she needed to take charge in the last 200m. But she ultimately had no problem doing that, chasing down Starliper from down as much as 50 or 60 meters.
The former soccer player surged in the final 50 meters, touching home for a winning time and personal indoor record time of 4:45.47 to win her first indoor national title. West Virginia's Victoria Starcher did the same thing, overcoming a huge deficit to start to finish second in 4:46.32 while Shoreham-Wading River (NY) High's Katherine Lee was third in 4:46.61.
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OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE
GLENBARD WEST HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT-ATHLETE NAMED GATORADE ILLINOIS GIRLS CROSS COUNTRY RUNNER OF THE YEAR CHICAGO (January 29, 2018)
In its 33rd year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, today announced Katelynne Hart of Glenbard West High School as its 2017-18 Gatorade Illinois Girls Cross Country Runner of the Year. Hart is the first Gatorade Illinois Girls Cross Country Runner of the Year to be chosen from Glenbard West High School. The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the racecourse, distinguishes Hart as Illinois’ best high school girls cross country runner. Now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Girls Cross Country Runner of the Year award to be announced in January, Hart joins an elite alumni association of past state award-winners in 12 sports, including Lukas Verzbicas (2010-11, 2009-10 Carl Sandburg, Orland Park, Ill.), Megan Goethals (2009-10, Rochester, Rochester Hills, Mich.), Jordan Hasay (2008-09, Mission College Prep., San Luis Obispo, Calif.) and Chris Derrick (2007-08, Neuqua Valley, Naperville, Ill.).
The 5-foot-3 sophomore raced to the Class 3A individual state championship this past season with a time of 16:22. Hart was the only runner in the country to place in the top five at both national championship races, taking second at the Foot Locker Cross Country Championships in 17:22.5, and finishing fourth at the Nike Cross Nationals Final in 17:41.6, earning All-American honors at both events. She also broke the tape at the NXN Midwest Regional championships (17:28.6) and took second at the Foot Locker Midwest Regional championships. Hart has volunteered locally on behalf of the Mawi Learning leadership group. “Katelynne has been blessed with incredible God-given talent, but her success as a runner can be directly attributed to her amazing work ethic,” said Glenbard West coach Paul Hass. “She is extremely self-disciplined and she knows what it takes to achieve her best and to compete against the best.”
Hart has maintained a 4.77 GPA in the classroom. She will begin her junior year of high school this fall. The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls track & field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport. The selection process is administered by the Gatorade Player of the Year Selection Committee, which work with top sport-specific experts and a media advisory board of accomplished, veteran prep sports journalists to determine the state winners in each sport. Hart joins Gatorade Illinois Girls Cross Country Runners of the Year Anna Sophia Keller (2016-17, St. Anthony High School), Judy Pendergast (2015-16, Naperville North High School), Maryjeanne Gilbert (2014-15, Peoria Notre Dame High School), Anna Sophia Keller (2013-14, St. Anthony High School), Courtney Ackerman (2012-13, New Trier High School), Amanda Fox (2011-12, Naperville Central High School), Kayla Beattie (2010-11, Woodstock High School), Lavinia Jurkiewicz (2009-10, Whitney M. Young Magnet High School), Lindsay Flanagan (2008-09, Lake Park High School), and Kristin Sutherland (2007-08, Carl Sandburg High School) as athletes who have won the cross country award since its inception in 2007.
As a Gatorade Player of the Year, Hart will be able to select a national or local youth sports organization to receive a grant as part of the Gatorade Play It Forward program. Every Gatorade Player of the Year state winner receives a $1,000 grant to donate and will have the opportunity to enter for an additional $10,000 spotlight grant by writing a brief essay explaining why their selected organization deserves additional support. 12 spotlight grants – one for each sport – will be announced throughout the year. To keep up to date on the latest happenings, become a fan of Gatorade Player of the Year on Facebook and follow the conversation on Twitter #GatoradePOY. For more on the Gatorade Player of the Year program, including nomination information, a complete list of past winners and the announcement of the Gatorade National Player of the Year, visit http://playeroftheyear.gatorade.com/.
Rachel Sadoff is a Team Prep USA client alumni who originally wrote this article for Tab.com (see the original article here).
‘You’re taking time off? Is something wrong? Are you OK?’
Yes, I’m OK. In fact, I’ve never been better. It may not be conventional, and it may not be without sacrifice, but choosing to take a leave of absence this semester has given me precious time and space at a critical moment in my life.
The race to graduate
In America, it seems, school is meant to be finished – fast. We value competition as well as camaraderie, pushing students to earn top marks throughout the semester and then retain massive amounts of information during finals. The semester is a crescendo, not a solo; pressure ebbs and flows according to syllabi and calendars, not the needs or interests of individual students.
When students stray, there can be consequences. Those who push ahead or fall behind might seem try-hard, lazy, or disorganized. To leave one’s graduating class and build a life outside of college can be daunting, complicated, and isolating. This sociology keeps us focused and on-track, but creates an unnecessary stigma for those of us who operate differently.
As Danny Manning, a junior at Harvard, points out, self-reflection and gratitude are also threatened by this rigidity. “Most kids our age have been on a path since their first year of school,” he writes. “Always having to look to the next step prevents you from appreciating the accomplishments and memories made thus far. Taking a leave forces you to step off this path, lending some much-needed breathing room and an invaluable perspective.”
A growing trend
Although leaves of absence make surprising news, they are not so uncommon. In fact, according to The Crimson, about one in 20 Harvard students choose to take time off (this figure excludes gap years taken between high school and college, which are also quickly growing in popularity).
“In the U.S., taking time off for travel, experience, or simply rest, was long considered an indulgence, where in the U.K. for example, it has been slightly more of an expectation,” according to Adrienne Green, writing for The Atlantic. “The increasing popularity of gap years in the U.S. could signal increased efforts to combat the workaholic culture that has proliferated at elite American higher-education institutions.”
One cause of this growing trend may be the increasing need for mental health treatment, as well as corresponding academic accommodations. For struggling students, Harvard’s Counseling and Mental Health Services offer thorough screening processes to help determine whether a leave of absence (and, later, a return to campus) is right for them. Even for those without clinical issues, though, leaves of absence can encourage emotional hygiene and career exploration, promoting both long-term mental health and a more enriching academic experience when they return.
Social media has given my peers a rare soapbox to share their transitions. Through Facebook and Snapchat, I have seen how and why many other Harvard students are taking leaves of absence. Some virtual sign-offs have clear goals, like foreign travel or physical recovery, and others are sweet and personal – proud goodbyes to buzzing libraries and study pills.
Learning to Thrive
Now facing a blank slate, I can begin to think clearly. There are no deadlines or credits to worry over, only my deepest goals and values. What have I always believed in? How can I use this time to grow into a wiser, more nuanced person? Am I taking full advantage of my time at Harvard?
For those of us who can live with parents, friends, or relatives, a leave of absence might allow for unpaid internships, or an opportunity to save up for the costs of college social life. Strict concentration requirements may limit our curiosities during the semester, but on a leave of absence, minds are unhindered: we might audit classes, build startups, try art or cooking, and so on.
Taking a leave of absence from Harvard may have felt like the hardest decision of my life, but that was because I thought I was alone. Friends, readers, strangers – it is never too late to stop and reflect in the hyper-stimulating world of college. And if you do, know for certain that you are not alone.
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