This edition of Five Questions & Quick Hitters is with 2023 Cassidy Shute. Cassidy is a 3-sport athlete from Austin High School in Minnesota who played club hoops with So-Minn Fury. Thanks for your time Cassidy!
1. I see on your timeline as part of the Cross Country team you recently ran the football in for the Homecoming game. How far did the team run to get the ball into Austin in time for the game?
-Our Cross-Country team has always had a tradition of running the football from the opposing school for our homecoming game and this year we played Owatonna, which was 41 miles away from Austin. This year we broke it up into two separate days. On the first day we took a van of 7 runners after school, and we covered 13 miles. On the second day we took 14 people and used the whole day to cover the rest of the 28 miles in the pour down rain. As we were all cold and shivering, it made out for a super fun day, and we made it back in time to run the football into our assembly!
2. We'll stick with Cross Country for another one. How is the season going for you and what are some of your goals as you get closer to the post-season?
-This is probably one of the best cross-country seasons I have had so far. Our team is doing an incredible job of accomplishing missions we have been trying to do since I was in seventh grade. We recently won the Lake City meet where every other year we always seemed to come out second and this year we finally finished the mission, which was super exciting for me as a senior. I continue to see myself tackling season bests every meet, which I hope to keep rolling. One of my goals for myself is to beat my personal best record I set as a seventh grader. As a team we are hoping to make it to state! As my time comes down to the end as the only girl senior, my goal is to leave an impact in every single one of these girls' lives. As the oldest leader on the team, I hope I can fulfill each girls’ memories full of how to be an astonishing team leader.
3. Last season at Austin you reached the State Tournament and won the Consolation Championship, piling up 26 wins along the way. Although the roster will look a lot different this season, what are some of your individual and team goals for 2022-23?
-Last year we had a very successful year, but we lost a lot of great seniors. This year as a team our goal is to get progressively better as the season goes along. We always have the goal of making it to the state tournament, but this year at the beginning of the season we are going to be working on filling those senior gaps that we have lost. My individual goal is to make all conference, increase my shooting percentage, and to be one of the biggest competitors in the Big 9.
4. You are a 3-sport athlete at Austin (Cross Country, Basketball and Track), as you're into your Senior year have you decided which sport you'll focus on in college, and what are some of the things you'll be looking for in a school and athletic program?
-I have not really set my path in what I want to do in college whether that be cross country/track or basketball. I am looking for a college that will be able to challenge me academically and athletically. I am looking for a school that fits my major, which is PT or chiropractic. I really want to find a program that feels exactly like my home away from home. I am looking for a school that offers more one-on-one capabilities with professors, so you just don’t feel like another kid in a class. I want to be apart of a team that wants to WIN and challenges each other everyday in practice.
5. Being a three sport athlete, plus competing in club basketball, provides a very busy schedule at times. What were some of the challenges you encountered, and what advice would you give to younger athletes who are planning to remain in multiple sports into High School?
-If you are ever doubting about not continuing three sports, don’t second guess yourself and just go for it. I have made so many new friends and a ton of new experiences that I would have never got in my life by just doing one sport. It is super challenging and can be very stressful at times, but it makes for the best learning experiences. I always have late practices and tons of homework, but I always wanted to get to bed early and if you know me, I am not one who stays up late to grind out homework. Instead, over the years I have learned how to manage my time, work ahead on homework or projects, study in advance for a test, and many more. For the younger kids out there, don’t follow your friends, follow your heart, because you all set different goals when you were younger. Don’t shy away from your goals, instead attack them. Being a three-sport athlete keeps you busy and for me I learned the best leadership skills I could be given. For you younger athletes, never compare yourself to someone else, because each of you have a unique talent that you're given that makes up a special part of your game. Live out your high school years and fulfill them, because let me tell you it all goes by in a blink of an eye.
1. Toughest player you've had to defend: Maren Westin
2. Go-to game day snack: Goldfish
3. Favorite Cross Country course you've run: Lake City
4. Favorite visiting High School gym to play at: Mankato East
5. Dream Job: Human/Animal Chiropractor
6. Favorite Book: The other side of glory
7. Biggest role model: My Parents
8. Favorite Coach of All-Time: Einertson (Ernie)- XC Coach
9. Last emoji you used on your phone: ❤
10. Favorite ice cream: Cookie Dough