Name: Colette Kinsella
School: Nazareth, senior
Sport: Cross country
Why she was selected: Kinsella took third at the Class 2A Kaneland Sectional cross country meet in 17 minutes, 50.62 seconds as Nazareth qualified for state for the fourth consecutive season. Kinsella was voted the Athlete of the Week in an online vote by readers. Here is her interview with Sports Editor Joshua Welge.
Welge: Qualifying for state for the fourth consecutive year, what are your emotions when you hear that?
Kinsella: Over the past few years we have definitely grown a lot as a team and got really good girls. This year we had a promising start and then had some injuries. Going into the sectional meet it was a situation that we knew it was going to be close. We were placed in a really tough sectional. After winning regionals, we knew state wasn’t guaranteed. We came in seventh place at sectionals, the last team to qualify. We were really nervous waiting for the results. Our coach came back and gave us the news and we were really excited.
Welge: How would you assess your race?
Kinsella: Pretty good. It was a really fast start. I knew it would be a quick pace with the girls who were in the sectional. I went in thinking I would stick with them. I haven’t been in a race like that. I thought I might as well try to stay with them. The first mile was really fast and then started to spread out. I thought I finished strong.
Welge: How has this year been different for you? I heard that last season you were dealing with an iron deficiency.
Kinsella: Last year definitely put things into perspective. I trained super hard, I came in strong and then it toppled over with iron deficiency and I could barely finish a race. I slowly climbed back, competed at state and did pretty well. This year I was determined to overcome that issue. I felt healthy and strong, continued to train hard. It still lingered at the beginning of the season, but by the fourth week I felt the strongest I had never been. It really makes you appreciate what your body can do.
Welge: What’s your goal going into state?
Kinsella: My freshman year and junior year I got the exact same place [13th), three or four seconds difference which is rare. I’d like to maybe get top 10 and really enjoy the moment. I feel like I can do more at state than I have because of where I’m at physically.