Approaching Molly Roach

(Photo Provided By Molly Roach)

First of all, how did you first start running?

I didn't focus on just track and cross country when I was young, but while playing other sports, I realized that I enjoyed running and that I had some speed. My first experience with track and cross country was when I joined the middle school track team in sixth grade.

What are all your personal records, including cross country?

400-  59.06

800-  2:13.50

5k-  19:21

Do you do, or have you done, any other sports?

I played basketball, softball, and soccer during elementary and middle school and I continued to play soccer throughout my high school career, doubling up in fall sports (soccer and cross country) my junior and senior years.

What is your favorite or most memorable competition you've ever been in?

The most memorable competition that I have competed in was when our 4 by 4 team broke our school record.   It was memorable because I was the anchor and our whole team was lined up along the final 100.  It was a record that was 20 years old and since then our class has broken 9 school records.

Other than your own teammates, who are some of your favorite athletes to compete against?

Other than my own teammates, I always enjoyed competing against Maddie Gourley, from Eagan, in conference and sections because she was always someone who I looked up to.  I also had many great races against Laura Bestul from Eastview.  Finally, I have enjoyed competing against one of my friends from soccer, Sammi Baer, from St. Louis Park, in our conference meets the past couple of years.

Who are some people that have been most helpful to you in your athletic career?

First of all, my high school coaches at Jefferson, Sean Faulk, Brian Melendez, Dusten Olejnicak, and Justin Lund, have been very influential in my athletic career.  From being there for pre-race words of wisdom to preparing ice bags for after my race, they have always given me good advice even when I didn't understand why I was doing a certain workout or racing a particular race, it always paid off in the end.  My family has also been helpful by always being there to support me.  Finally, my teammates, especially those that I have ran with since 6th grade, Elise Longley and Alyssa Lind, have all been very helpful in my athletic career.

What is one piece of advice or re-race word of wisdom from your coaches that has stuck with you?

My coaches always remind us of the work that we have put in to prepare for each race.  This helps to calm us down and gives us confidence before races.

What is a challenge you have faced in your running career?

During my ninth grade season I sprained both my ankles while playing soccer which slowed down my training a little that season.

What are your main goals for this upcoming track season?

My main goals this season in track are to continue to improve my times in both the 800 and the 400 as well as to return to the Hamline Elite Meet and State and for our team to win the conference meet again.

Do you have any college plans?

I plan to study business at the University of Minnesota while competing in track there.  Coach Hopkins and Coach Bingle have built a great program there and I am excited to join a talented group of runners.


(Photo Provided By Molly Roach)

What were some of the things that most attracted you to the U?

I was attracted to the U for several reasons. I really enjoyed the team atmosphere and how friendly everyone was.  A lot of the girls that run there are girls that I have looked up to since I was in eighth grade. Also, it's very close to home which was a big factor for me.  I am looking forward to the new facilities as well.

Do you have any rituals, routines, or superstitions either on or off the track?

On meet days, I am very particular about what I eat, I will only eat bananas and sandwiches and I always wear my hair in a braid. A ritual that our team has is the day before each meet during the cross country season our team runs to a place called the Japanese garden and we all said a motivational piece of advice or something in that realm.  

When not running miles or running on ovals, what might we find you doing?

When I'm not at cross country or track you can find me with my friends, doing homework, working, or cheering at other sporting events.  I enjoy having a full schedule, so I try to participate in a variety of different things.

Tell me one bizarre fact about yourself.

My coach, Sean Faulk, always laughs at me because I have a particular way of tying my shoes and because I won't throw away food that I don't eat before my races.

Does this mean you have hordes of uneaten food in your meet luggage?

Well, you never know when you'll need a snack!