Catching up with Julie Amthor
Nov. 11, 2010
Following an impressive showing at the ISU Pre-Nationals Invitational, the Longhorns placed fifth at the Big 12 Cross Country Championships and look to build upon this performance heading into the NCAA South Central Regional meet this weekend.
After redshirting her sophomore season, junior Julie Amthor has played an integral role in the team's success in 2010, scoring in each meet for the Longhorns this year. Amthor looks to help lead the Texas harriers on Saturday in their pursuit of the first team qualification for the 2010 NCAA Cross Country Championships since 2002.
Amthor recently sat down with TexasSports.com to talk about personal confidence and the team's mindset leading up to Saturday's Regional meet.
How is the team feeling coming out of Big 12s and heading into Regionals this weekend? Big 12s did not go exactly the way we would have liked it to, but we feel very confident in all of our abilities. So we're pretty confident that we can get the job done. Going into Regionals, we're just all in such a good position. We have three girls that are in a really good place to be in the top five and then we have the next bunch of us that could be in the top ten easily. It's good that we have so much depth so if one of us has a bad race, we have that pack of girls that is all running the same paces in practice, workouts and races.
Talk a little bit about the season thus far and the team's progress toward your goals. We came into the season with a lot of depth and from the beginning we had a lot of girls running really strong. I don't think we realized how good were until Pre-Nationals where we had a pretty good performance that kind of gave us the confidence that we are a team that could perform pretty well at the regional and national level. All of us have just been working really hard and our times have been coming down every week. Big 12s were kind of a hurdle because we didn't do as well as we would have liked as a team, but not all of us had the best races that we could have had, so I think that gives us confidence. We didn't have the best race that we could have had, but we still performed solid.
How have the contributions of the freshmen this year helped you develop as a runner this year? I think it is not so much that they are freshmen but more that we have new girls that really made an immediate impact on the team that has helped me. My freshman year I got injured and last year I redshirted, so this year I didn't really feel like a huge part of the cross country team coming in. I came onto the team and I started competing, and we have this huge contribution from the freshmen that have really enabled us to be as good as we have been. It has helped me develop in that I feel like I am part of a team, and a good team at that. So because you know you are part of a team that is really strong, it just pushes you to do that much better. You want to travel. You want to be someone who is contributing to helping our team go to nationals.
As an upperclassman, how have you helped the younger members of your team adjust and develop? They will come to us and ask us questions about races, but I can't say I have been a huge part of the big successes that they have had because they are just very talented girls. I help them in what I can, but they have their minds right and they are racing well.
What is your favorite thing about Coach Sisson? I think the thing with Steve is that he is a very big believer in the power of your mind. He has always kind of instilled that in me and even when I was injured he has made me believe that I can run just as fast as if I hadn't had been. I truly believe it, and I think that that is the most powerful thing in running, being able to believe that you are the best, that you can be up there with the leaders, that you can make a contribution even though you may not have performed that way before. And I think he does a really awesome job at just bringing out my potential and all the other girls' potentials. Without that kind of a coach it is really hard to go into a race with a bunch of teams that are ranked nationally and truly believe that you should be there and up with the front.