NC State junior talks NCAA title win

Two days after she won her second individual NCAA Division I women’s title and helped North Carolina State win its second straight women’s cross-country team championship, Katelyn Tuohy was, well, running.

With the first indoor meet just two weeks away before her team will go on break, she and her teammates logged eight miles Monday morning, which stretched to about 10 with strides and a warm-down.

That, of course, is the kind of thing that helps create champions.

But during a Zoom call with reporters after that run, Tuohy, whose high-pressured past as a high school running star who made the cover of Sports Illustrated before her junior year at North Rockland High, indicated she and her teammates took an underdog mentality into Saturday’s race.

That was true even though the defending-champion Wolfpack was ranked No. 1 in the country and Tuohy was undefeated.

And despite the fact that while entering the race as, for all purposes, the co-favorite with Florida’s Parker Valby, Tuohy hadn’t expected cross-country success to come to her so soon.

“I never thought I’d win as a junior. I thought maybe senior year,” the 20-year-old 2020 North Rockland grad said.

But it hasn’t been a straight launch to the top.

Tuohy had knee surgery prior to her arrival at NC State and a recently-tweaked hamstring had raised race analysts’ concerns before Saturday’s win.

“It’s never easy,” Tuohy said, referring to the “ups and downs” she and other runners encounter.

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