The Wolfpacker

July-August 2022

The Wolfpacker: An Independent Magazine Covering NC State Sports

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Page 47 of 59

48 ■ THE WOLFPACKER "I've been thinking about that every single day, wanting to follow in Elly's footsteps and compete at this level at this meet," Tuohy said the day before this year's NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships began in June in Eugene, Ore. "Watching her was really inspiring and gave me a lot of motivation for this year." Tuohy's determination was evident at the NCAA meet. The Wolfpack sopho- more might have watched last year's race on TV, but she watched this one from the front of the field. After battling Florida's Parker Valby and Oklahoma State's Taylor Roe for most of the race, Tuohy pulled ahead with about 600 meters to go and coasted to victory. She finished in 15:18.39 to head- line an impressive showing by NC State that included freshman Marlee Starliper finishing ninth, junior Samantha Bush 10th, senior Hannah Steelman 11th and junior Savannah Shaw 20th. "This one meant a lot," Tuohy said. "Last year, I didn't even qualify for out- door nationals. I watched Elly Henes win this from back home in New York. "It was really cool to be able to follow in her footsteps and win another title for NC State, alongside four of my teammates. This one is really special." The victory was a testament to Tuohy's perseverance. After a decorated high school career in which she set national records in four track events, as well as the 5-kilometer cross country race, Tuohy arrived at NC State in 2020 with a knee injury that kept her from competing. She didn't open her collegiate career until the winter of 2021, when she partici- pated on the Wolfpack's distance medley relay team while also finishing 24th at the COVID-delayed NCAA Women's Cross Country Championships. Her only ap- pearance at NCAAs was as a member of the distance medley relay team that set a school record at indoor nationals. In contrast to her difficult first year, Tuohy began her sophomore season brilliantly. She opened the Wolfpack's cross country campaign by winning the adidas XC Challenge and went on to fin- ish second at the ACC meet and 15th at the NCAA Championships, part of an effort that saw NC State bring home the national crown. But then came more health issues. Tuohy developed an Achilles problem at the end of the cross country season, and in December she contracted both COVID and the flu. Once again, she was required to show resilience. Fortunately for the Wolfpack, that's one quality she has in abundance. THE CLOSER Distance Runner Katelyn Tuohy Surges To A National Championship FEMALE ATHLETE OF THE YEAR KATELYN TUOHY Tuohy's finishing kick finished off Florida's Parker Valby and Oklahoma State's Taylor Roe in the 5,000-meter race, giving the NC State sophomore her first NCAA championship. PHOTO BY KEVIN NERI BY MATT HERB atelyn Tuohy watched last year's NCAA 5,000-meter outdoor championship from a couch at her parents' home in Stony Point, N.Y. Slowed by lingering injury problems and faced with the pressure to keep dominating at the collegiate level the way she had in high school, Tuohy endured a chal- lenging freshman year that ended with her failing to qualify for outdoor nationals. The disappointment of missing out gave way to a feeling of excitement when her NC State teammate Elly Henes won the title, and that sensation soon gave way to something even more powerful: a sense of determination to do just what Henes had done. K

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