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Volume 68, Issue 46, Wednesday, October 30, 2002

Sports
 

Fresh legs

McCarty's adopted brother gives the sophomore cross country runner a new purpose

By Emily Davis
The Daily Cougar

Adoption is a hotly debated topic in today's society. But there was no other choice for Kelly McCarty's family; it brought home a 3-year-old boy from the Marshall Islands five years ago.

"I fell in love with him the instant I saw him," McCarty said. "Now the biggest thing I strive for is to be a good sister to him."

The sophomore UH cross country member said she is thrilled her family made the decision.


Sophomore cross country runner Kelly McCarty has placed in every meet the team has competed in this season, including two third-place finishes at the Sam Houston State and Texas A&M Invitational tournaments.
Lorrie Novosad/The Daily Cougar

"He is the best thing in my life," McCarty said. "I'd say he is what inspires my running."

McCarty has been a valued asset to the Lady Cougars this season, taking places in every meet she has competed in and helping the team to earn as high as a third-place finish in the Sam Houston State and Texas A&M Invitational tournaments.

"Running is pretty much all that is on my mind at this point," she said.

However, the 5-6 native of Springfield, Ohio, said she likes spending downtime with friends in Houston and making frequent trips to College Station to visit her boyfriend.

McCarty did not receive formal running training during high school and is pleased with her success so far.

"I never expected to be good enough to have a chance like this, and I'm actually doing well in my meets, which is great," she said.

The self-described Reese Witherspoon fan said a rigorous summer training schedule helped prepare her for this season.

"I worked out with Jessica Oaks, who is also from Ohio, over the summer," she said. "We ran more than we ever had, and got up to 70 miles a week by the end of the break."

Planning to major in nutrition, McCarty said she hopes to work as a nutritionist and a coach after she finishes school. She also looks to a long career of amateur running upon graduation.

"I would love to run marathons and hit all the local races that anyone can enter," she said. "I'd also like to compete in the cross country nationals when I finish at UH. The encouragement I get from my coach is what keeps me going. It gives me a drive for competition."

The oldest of three siblings, McCarty looks to be a role model for her younger sister and brother at home.

"I strive to do the best I can, and am succeeding because of that," she said. "I hope they will see where hard work can take them."

 Send comments to dcsports@mail.uh.edu

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