By Garrett Collins
When some athletes enter college programs, it can take them some time to figure out the change in competition, not to mention the commitment and the strain that playing a college sport can have on your mental and physical health. For some athletes this can be a daunting challenge. For others the transition is easier.
Senior human development and family relations and Latin American studies student, Rebecca Block is entering her spring season for the Cardinals track and field team. This past week she competed in the SUNYAC championship where she competed in two different events, the only runner on the Plattsburgh team to do so in the mile run in which she was seeded eighth and placed sixth and in the 5,000 meter she placed fourth in the mile.
“I surprised myself, I thought this weekend I was going to have a good 5k, but the 5k wasn’t so hot,” Block said. “The mile was literally not even 10 hours later and I placed 4th and got a PR.”
These finishes have not been new to Block, as she has consistently finished top ten in most of her races throughout her career and at her level these finishes are not a surprise as she has consistently competed in the SUNYAC tournament.
“It was definitely exciting being the only freshman at the time, that was really the last time I was able to compete because last season didn’t count,” Block said.
The last season that she is referencing is the season that was impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Inconsistent training, motivation wasn’t there, just wasn’t as excited as past seasons,” Block said.
With all the top ten finishes and highs as an athlete here in Cardinal Country she wasn’t always one to choose sports as her number one priority.
“I actually was a theater kid in Highschool,’’ Block said. “I had to quit soccer for theater. And then I had to quit theater for track.”
Block is entering her final season although she is keeping the door open for a return.
“There’s potential for another one, but yea it’s my last one.” Block said. “Next semester I’m not officially graduating because I have an internship and I might take more classes because I have eligibility, and we are getting a new coach, so just to facilitate everything and stick around.” Block said.
Looking back at her Cardinal career the first thing that comes to mind for her is the relationship she was able to build with her teammates.
“For the distance events, if my friends are in a distance event,” Block said. “I just love cheering for them every lap, every straight away. Especially on the bus has been extra fun, On the bus ride home we have fun shouting everybody out and alot more comradery.”
One of her teammates, Kristen Thomas describes that comradery that she has towards her teammates.
“Rebecca and I have been teammates since freshman year. She has always been a source of energy for both herself and her team. Rebecca has always worked to push herself at every meet, regardless of the circumstances, and has never given up on herself or our team. It has been a blast being one of her teammates for the past four years and we have made so many great memories to cherish.”
The Comradery that the team has is something that is new to the group that wasn’t as prevalent on the team in past years.
“I’m really happy it’s a new tradition me and the seniors left behind,”Block said. “I think [the seniors] did a good job keeping spirits up and just keeping the team together.”
Post Cardinal career Rebecca looks to continue her life in the sport and maybe move into a level where she can teach others and help the next generation or runners find their way.
“I’d like to run marathons and half marathons, but coaching would be a lot of fun,” Block said. “I like the sport more than competing so it would be fun.”