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Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Sports > High School >> Cross Country/Track

Monticello senior Sarah Grodin is headed to West Point

Mar 8, 2019

By Joseph Abraham - sports and life editor

By: MATT SHORTALL | DEMOCRAT
Sarah Grodin signs her official letter of intent to run track and cross country at the United States Military Academy.
by JOSEPH ABRAHAM

MONTICELLO -- Monticello senior Sarah Grodin signed her official letter of intent to attend the United States Military Academy (USMA) on Monday. Grodin will run track and cross country at Army.
Grodin was scouted by Army Head Coach Michael Smith at the Nike Cross Regional Race her junior year, when she placed third out of 300 or so girls.
“He asked me if I ever considered going to West Point, which I hadn't,” she said. “After that I did some research and attended the Summer Leaders Experience Camp for a week at West Point which gave me a good idea of what it was like. Coach Smith called me every other week after that point and I went on my NCAA official visit in September which really sold me on everything.

Grodin began running at the modified level in seventh grade and has competed at the varsity level since eighth grade.
As for what she enjoys about track and cross-country, Grodin says, “I love the team aspect of the sports but also the individual work. The races are a lot of fun also. There's nothing like putting on your spikes and getting on the line.”
Why did she choose Army? “I love everything West Point stands for: leadership, character and family are my favorites,” she said. “The girls on the team are so nice, and they're some of the best runners in the Patriot League. I wanted to join a program where I could grow and develop both athletically and academically, and Army is that program. Also the experience and prestige I'll get from the USMA is the best in our area and the country. I visited several other Division I schools but none had the presence and challenges like West Point.”
This is second consecutive outdoor track season that Rick Sternkopf will coach Grodin. He was also her cross country coach in the fall. However, before that, he was an assistant coach on several teams she's been on since eighth grade.
“Sarah is such a special athlete,” Sternkopf said. “She continues to impress me each and every day with her work ethic at practice, and her success throughout the cross country season can attest to that by earning a medal at the State Meet.
“She shows a high level of dedication to the sport, is a fierce competitor, and a great teammate,” he added. “I couldn't be happier for her as she gets ready to go to West Point next year, and looking forward to cheering her on as she races next year as an NCAA Athlete for the Army Black Knights.”
But Grodin is not done at Monticello yet.
She has several goals for the outdoor track season, which will finish out her high school career. She wants to break her school record in the steeplechase and compete in the 1500 and 3000 to get some current marks. Her ultimate goal is to make it to New Balance Nationals for the steeple.
Lastly Grodin said, “I couldn't have done this without my family, coaches and friends who supported me all along the way!”





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