Athelete of the Week: Betsy Heines
November 12, 2011 Leave a comment
by Alissa Stieha
Cross-country runners know that they will practice any day of the week. They practice in the rain, the cold, the mud and the burning sun.
The members of Transylvania’s women’s cross-country team push one another to run at their personal best. All of them are integral to keeping the team together and running as hard as they can.
Senior Betsy Heines has not slacked off in keeping up with the leadership roles runners must take upon themselves.
“She cares about everybody on the team,” said head coach Heidi Pinkerton. “Once she has finished her race she is there at the finish cheering on her teammates.”
Betsy’s strength lies not only on the course, cheering her teammates on, but also in the classroom. Between practices she focuses on school and excels in her studies.
“I came to Transy for academics,” said Heines. “Being able to run is just a bonus.”
Once she steps on the course, however, Heines pushes herself just as hard as she does in the classroom. She has consistently lowered her time in the women’s five-kilometer race since the beginning of the season, right up to the most recent race at the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference championship.
In this six-kilometer race, Heines placed fifth out of 97 runners with a time of 24:20.36. This was also the second fastest finish in Transy cross-country history for this distance and earned her HCAC All-Conference honors.
It’s not only Heines’ personal times that make her a motivator for the team to do better, but also her heart.
“Her example of dedication alone shows the team what they can do if they just put in the hard work,” said Pinkerton.
Heines, after overcoming sickness at the beginning of the year, doesn’t let life come in the way of running with her team.
“She is not afraid of pushing her body and hurting during workouts or races,” said Pinkerton. “Betsy is a leader by example.”
Heines aims high to succeed both in her races and in her classes. Her determination to succeed in all she does is promising for her future success.
Pinkerton has high hopes for this future.
“I want Betsy to graduate college with top academic honors and knowing that she left everything she had on the track along with some school records. Betsy will be missed next year and I don’t think I will be able to replace her,” Pinkerton said.