By Ryan Kaczmarski
Magnificat High School has added another person to its long list of student-athletes who have taken their talents to the college level. Track and cross country star Katie Kerr has chosen to run for the Golden Griffins of Canisius College in Buffalo, N.Y.
“My deciding factors that put Canisius on the top came from the family feel of the team and the coaches,” Kerr said. “When I stayed for an overnight visit with the team, I felt like I already knew the team for years already and I was able to fit right in with the group. Also, the coaches there are all about individualism with their athletes, which helps for me because of the past injuries I have had.
“Lastly, the Canisius coaches were willing to give me a scholarship to sign a letter of intent.”
There were other factors besides athletics in Kerr making the decision.
“The deciding factors in choosing a college were if I could see myself living with the cross country and track team, and if I got a good feeling when talking to the coaches. Money definitely – like for many others – is a huge deciding factor in picking a college, and lastly, if the college has the major of sports medicine and a minor in music (vocal).”
As a freshman at Magnificat, Kerr ran on the 4×800-meter relay team, which took second place at the state track and field championships. In cross country, she ran in the state meet twice, with a high individual finish of 10th in the state.
“In my next few years at Canisius – in my running career – I believe that with the help and individualism that the coaches share, I will be able to make myself fully healthy, start dropping times and be able to get back into ‘the game.’
I will be competing in cross country and on the (future) track and field team, that will hopefully be put together by my sophomore year at Canisius. I love both sports equally, where in both cross country and track, I am able to just put aside my life for a while and just run.”
According to Kerr, many factors have given her the chance to succeed at the next level.
“I thank my parents first, for taking all their energy and time to have me go to Magnificat,” she said. “I also thank all my friends, teammates and all the amazing parents for always giving me support through injuries, races and everyday life. I also thank my coaches, because without them, I would have never been as strong and race-smart as I am today.
“Since I have come to Magnificat, I have been prepared to succeed at the next level with learning about running schedules, injury preventions, ice baths, planning ahead of time and much more since I started my running career.”
Kerr maintained first honors status throughout her high school academic career. She also found time to volunteer at the West Side Irish American Club and Malachi House, sing in the Chorale performing arts club and work at Dairy Queen.