For freshman Kelly Williams, cross country has been a little more than a walk in the park. “I’ve been running track since sixth grade. This is my first year participating in cross country,” she said.
Like many freshmen at Marian, Kelly’s sports experience has helped her grow as a teammate, an athlete, and a part of the Marian community. However, it has also helped her relationship with her sister grow.
Senior Katie Williams ran cross country with Kelly this year and was her sister’s biggest cheerleader. “Katie really talked it up and always gave me advice that helped when I was running,” Kelly said.
One would imagine that being on the same sports team as a sibling would be challenging. For Kelly, however, it only benefited her. “It makes carpooling much easier!”
While she was subjected to being playfully teased by her sister every now and then, it did not affect her relationship with the rest of the team. Kelly soon earned the affectionate nickname of Little Williams and formed a bond with her sister’s friends.
“The team couldn’t talk most of the time because we were so out of breath. We were suffering, but we all got to suffer together. It was nice to be able to look at a senior and find that there was something we could both relate to,” Kelly said.
Aside from getting healthier and stronger bodies, the Williams sisters also got a healthier and stronger relationship out of the cross country season. ìIn grade school I never really got to see her because she was so busy doing homework,” Kelly said.
“Cross country let us spend more time together as teammates and as sisters.”
Though this will be their first and last season together, Kelly will have memories of her sister that will last her a lifetime. “There are lots of inside jokes between us and funny stories we can look back on.”
Along with being her biggest fan, Katie has also been Kelly’s biggest role model. “Katie is a great example of what hard work can do. Sheís gotten a lot out of what she’s done.”
And while her sister is going away to college next year, Kelly will continue to be inspired by her sister’s character and achievements. “Katie has always been a very supportive sister. Without her, I wouldn’t be as accomplished.”