Virginia's Two Sport Sensation Eyes Nationals in Final Season of Competition
by Brook Warner
Sports Information Assistant
For Virginia’s Katie Kiladis, two sports is not enough to keep herbusy. The senior is a member of Virginia’s nationally ranked womenpis soccerteam as well as one of the top performers on the track and field squad.
“I’ve always competed in sports year round so I don’t really knowwhat to do with myself when Ipim not competing or training,” Kiladis said.
Recruited more for track and field than soccer out of high school,Kiladis said that she chose Virginia based on the track program but talkedto then womenpis soccer coach, Lauren Gregg, about joining the team once shearrived on grounds. Highly touted as a senior from Framingham, Mass.Kiladis was named to the All-State and All-New England teams in both trackand soccer and she has not disappointed either team during her tenure here.
On the soccer field she saw limited action, but scored two goals ononly four shots in her first year. In her second year, she tallied fourgoals while taking only seven shots. In her third year, she made theswitch from offense to defense in order to help the team out. A naturalforward, she switched to defense when the Cavs’ defensive third was struckby a rash of injuries. After switching to defense, she started the last tengames of the season and helped lead the Cavs to a 12-7-2 record and an NCAAappearance.
“It was a tough adjustment at first, but the coaches worked with mea lot and I was able to adjust pretty well.” She began her final seasonagain on defense, but switched back to her natural forward position.
“I like playing up top, but I donpit really mind playing defense.”She ended her soccer career with nine goals and 24 points.
After a one week break after the conclusion of the soccer season,Kiladis began training for the sport in which she has many more accoladesaindoor and outdoor track. She competes in the heptathlon and pentathlon andhas earned All-ACC honors in both. Last year Kiladis took third place inthe heptathlon in the ACC outdoor championship and this year at the ECACmeet in Boston, she captured the second place title in the pentathlon byrecording 3567 points, a personal record. In the same meet, she jumped5.51m which was good enough for ninth place.
The two sports compliment each other, Kiladis said, but she feelsthat soccer actually helps her prepare for track rather than vice versa.
“I come right off of soccer and go directly to track so I alreadyam in good condition for track season. Whereas in soccer I have the wholeseason after track ends, so I have to work back up to the level of fitnessthat I was at before.”
A pulled hamstring in the spring of her second year forced her totake a medical red shirt and miss the entire outdoor track season. “Thatwas a pretty major thing for me, a really tough obstacle to overcome,” shesaid. Because of the missed season, she has one season of eligibility leftin track, but the Economics major will graduate in May.
However, before the outstanding athlete takes part in May’scommencement exercises, she has a few matters of business to take care ofin the spring.
“I want to do well at ACC’s and hopefully qualify for nationals.”