Wednesday, December 4, 2013
By Matt DiFilippo email@example.com
Matt McClintock wasn't sure what to do. His coaches told him his summer training program would start off with two weeks of rest.
RUNNING STRONG: Madison graduate Matt McClintock is preparing for his sophomore season at Purdue University. The Athens native finished eighth at the Big Ten Cross Country Championship Meet as a freshman.
McClintock, an Athens native, had an outstanding freshman cross country season at Purdue University, finishing eighth in the Big Ten meet and 103rd at the NCAA championships. He estimates the last time he didn't run for two weeks straight was before his junior year at Madison Area Memorial High School. In those days, McClintock points out, he was taking the entire summer off.
"I've never taken that much time as part of a training regimen," he said.
So what happened his first day back?
"I went out and ran a really fast six miles," McClintock said. "I paid for it the next day, but I ran a really fast six miles."
McClintock also finished 20th at the World Junior Cross Country Championships in March -- the best finish by an American in four years -- and his goal for this fall is an individual Big Ten title. While he finished eighth in that race last year, all seven finishers ahead of him were seniors.
"My attitude will be anything other than a win is a disappointment," he said. "If I don't, eventually I will be able to put it in perspective and know I was able to help my team. But the immediate reaction will be complete disappointment."
As far as what kind of a performance he'll need to win the Big Ten title, McClintock said that will depend on a number of factors, but he's figuring he'll need to come in under 24 minutes for the 8,000-meter race. McClintock finished in 24:04 at the conference meet last year.
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Leah Edmondson entered the summer with a different approach. Edmondson, a Burnham native who scored 75 goals in her high school field hockey career at Maine Central Institute and Nokomis, was a backup as a freshman last fall at Northeastern.
Edmondson played 16 games and took four shots. She said her spring and summer training was devoted to "doing the little things to make sure you get better -- not just physically, but mentally as well."
Edmondson said she worked four four-day camps for Northeastern, and also worked with the Majestix field hockey club, teaching the game to younger players. She also worked a Fellowship of Christian Athletes Camp with former University of New Hampshire standout Margaux (Shute) Poplaski.
"It has to be year-round, but I enjoy it, so it's not a chore or anything," Edmondson said.
This summer, Edmondson also played one or two days a week at a High Performance camp in Boston. The drive was six or seven hours round-trip for a three-hour practice.
"It's very high-paced," she said. "It's a step above college."
This fall, Edmondson's goal is just to make more of a difference in Northeastern's success.
"I really want to be able to start, or be the first player off the bench," she said. "I want to go out and show how much I've improved, and make an impact. And I really want to score goals this year."
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When Nicole Rugan was going through the college process, she found out a lot about Division I field hockey coaches, and the expectations they have for work ethic. As a sophomore-to-be at St. Anselm College in Manchester, N.H., Rugan is getting a firsthand reminder that Division II coaches have similar expectations.
"My coach gave us a workout packet the day we left in May," said Rugan, a Cony High School graduate. "It's probably a 15-20 page packet."
Rugan said the packet has a calendar. Three days a week are lifting, agility drills, and core workouts. Three days a week are running, plyometrics, and planks.
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