Making up for lost time | News, Sports, Jobs
MOUNT PLEASANT – Negaunee alumnus Emily Paupore may not have had one last time to shine on the track in the spring of 2020, but she has certainly been a silver lining on Central Michigan University’s roster this past. year.
The freshman was a second-team All-MAC (Mid-American Conference) winner this fall during the cross country season and then turned heads during the indoor and outdoor track season as well. She admits that moving downstate was a little intimidating, but the most worrying part was probably wondering if there would even be a cross-country season given that the COVID-19 pandemic was still going on. rage last fall.
“I was really nervous that we weren’t going to have a season,” she said in a recent interview. “In fact, they canceled it right before we went to report to campus. So after that I was a little disappointed because we had been training all summer and everything. A few weeks after the start of the season, my coach told us that the MAC was going to organize a few meetings and that we were going to have our MAC meeting. The season has returned, we only ran three times, but it was really fun. Before the interior, I honestly didn’t think we were going to have the interior either. I texted my coach in the middle of winter because I was training and stuff and I was like, “Do you really think we’re going to have a gym?” Do we still have it? And she was like ‘Yeah’ and I was so surprised. I really didn’t think we were going to have it with COVID and all, especially just being stuck in a building. I was more confident about the outside, I guess.
Things turned out well in that regard, but that didn’t mean things were going to go smoothly for Paupore in his freshman year, as competition is always tougher at the college level, especially in NCAA Division I. .
“Cross country has always been my favorite sport, I really love it” she said. “It was a 6K so it was a little adjustment and I’ve only run twice before. So I ran a 5K and a 6K and the MAC encounter was a 6K, so I think that was a little intimidating. I’m just trying to figure out how to run a 6K because I feel like you run a 5K as fast as you can and then get through the 6K. Right in the face of the MAC’s first meeting, there are a lot of really good girls out there. I came in thinking “Oh, maybe it won’t be that bad”, but there are some really good girls out there and they’re up for the MAC date. As the MAC encounter is really a big deal. So going to my first MAC meeting I was expecting a lot and got the second All-MAC team that I was super excited about. I walked in and I was like “I’m going to try to be in the top 7” and I realized “Oh my God, everyone was running really fast that day”. So I was like ‘OK, I’m just going to try to get the top 15 and I’ll try to get All-MAC.’ I don’t know if I finished 12th or 14th, but whatever, I scored at MAC and got All-MAC so I was super excited about that. But it was definitely an adjustment to always have girls to run and run with. It’s really exciting and competitive, so there are a ton of girls going to the first rounds (NCAA preliminary championships) in the MAC. It just shows the elite level of our conference.
Then there was the athletics season, which was definitely a new experience for Paupore as there is no indoor season in high school.
“At first it’s really a transition challenge, I mean I ran in the winter but never trained hard in the winter,” she said. “Just run to college, you train hard all year round. You don’t really have that, I wouldn’t say a break you take in high school, but like, you don’t do hard workouts every week. It was definitely a bit of a transition. I did a few indoor meetings in high school, but not at the same level as in university. I trained so much in college that I never hurt myself, thank goodness, but it was definitely a bit more of a challenge just for my body and stuff. I definitely had to focus on the little things and make sure I was getting enough sleep and eating well and all that to make sure I didn’t hurt myself just because of the intensity of my workout. It is difficult to train all winter.
The outdoor season was also something new for her as Paupore was able to host an event that she didn’t have the chance to attend when she was in Negaunee.
“I love this outdoor season, it was so much fun,” said Paupore.
“When the outdoor started, I had to run in Texas and we were doing some training. And I was about five miles from the workout so I don’t really know what happened, but we were only doing 200 seconds after doing a tempo run and I pulled them out a bit. hamstrings. And it was just a freak accident, I think. So I rested for a few days and the healing process was supposed to be a lot longer, but our physiotherapists were awesome about it and I healed in four days and I was running again. So I missed the Texas game, but I feel like it prepared me well for the outside world. I got to run in Virginia in the 10K which is my very first 10K and it was awesome. One of my teammates went with our coach and it was such a cool experience. I think running 10K is something I’ve always wanted to do. In high school I knew this could be one of my events. So it was great to be able to run 10K and 5K.
Another good experience for Paupore came a few weeks ago, not with the Chippewas, but with the Miners as she helped coach her hometown team for a while.
“It’s so much fun,” she said. “My mom (Vickie Paupore) does such a good job with the track and field program and I think after being an athlete and seeing that it’s so cool. She spends so much time doing it and seeing her do it is just awesome. She is so supportive of all the girls on the team and just got home from college and seeing her from a different perspective, I see her now more than in high school. How much she really cares about all these girls.
Being a part of the underage track and field season has been a bit bittersweet for Paupore as she missed her final year, but she sees it in a positive light.
“That’s what’s really hard for me is going back to high school and like ‘I wish I had another shot at everything.’ But I always try to think about it from the perspective of, if I had run in high school I wouldn’t have had so much time to prepare for college and I might not see the results that I am right now in college if I had run an extra year of high school. I always try to look at it that way. That might not be how it works, but it makes me feel a bit less sad to have lost the season. “
Her high school career may not have ended the way she wanted it to, but after her performance this year at CMU, it’s clear that Paupore has a bright future.
Ryan Stieg can be reached at 906-228-2500, ext. 252. His email address is email@example.com.