Q & A with the new women’s cross-country coach

Smeathers brings collegiate experience to role


Caroline Steiger

The women’s cross-country team, shown participating in a meet last fall, has a new head coach.

Caleb Land, Sports Editor

Mrs. Shelbi Smeathers recently has been new head coach for the women’s cross-country team, a team with the reputation of having a huge turnout and outstanding runners. Coach Smeathers answered a reporter’s questions about her new role.

Q: What are you most excited about regarding this new coaching position?

A: I am excited to be working with girls to help each runner achieve her best performance. Cross-country is unique because we can celebrate the successes of individuals as well as the whole team’s effort.

Q: What are both your immediate and long-range goals for the team?

A: I am hopeful to get our practices more organized and then also to see our girls make a great run toward the state meet next tournament season.

Q: What is your background as a high school and/or college athlete? How will you apply that experience to your coaching?

I ran in high school for Center Grove and then I competed (Division I) for Butler University. While at Butler I was an individual conference champion and was a member of two teams which competed in the NCAA championships. We finished third in the nation as a team my senior year. I plan to apply my experiences as an athlete who competed at the highest collegiate level toward creating an effective training program for young women in sport.

Q: What is your role at Cathedral other than serving as a head coach? How will you balance your coaching and administrative duties?

I am also the director for STEAM at Cathedral, which currently means I am learning about how we can integrate our science, technology, engineering, arts and math classes together.

Q: Have you received any guidance or input from the previous head coach? If so, what? How will you apply that input to your coaching?

A: I am excited that Coach (Mr. Mark) Doctor will continue to be helping the team this next year.

Q: With a different coach comes changes. What will be one or two of those changes the girls on your team will notice right away?

A: Our practice structure will be changing a little bit, and we will have a different plan for cross-country camp this year.

Q: Is there anything else you would like to share?

Cross-country is a fun, inclusive sport for young women of all ability levels. I hope any young woman who has a desire to be physically active and participate in a sport with friends feels comfortable joining our team.