Lexi Rushatz balances soccer, cross country
Lexi Rushatz likes keeping being on the move.
The Catasauqua cross country and girls’ soccer team certainly can appreciate her efforts.
Rushatz, a freshman, finished 16th in the recent Colonial league championships at De Sales University. She ran the 3.1-mile course in 22:44.07. Senior Cam Ritter was the top boys’ finisher for the Roughies, as he recorded a 51st finish with a time of 20.01.52.
Along with cross country, Rushatz is the leading scorer for the girls’ soccer team that began district play Thursday against Moravian Academy.
“It felt good,” said Rushatz about her finish at the league meet. “To be 16th in the league is a great honor.
“Playing both sports has been fun. I like keeping busy and it hasn’t really bothered me at all this year.”
When she was younger, Rushatz was involved in the Catasauqua youth track program. Unlike most athletes, running was a pleasure.
“I always believed that I could run,” she said. “I began in the track program and I have been working on it ever since. I have played soccer since I was five, but just running was always fun for me.
“When I found out that I could run cross country, I couldn’t wait to get started.”
Head coach Kyle Rusnock has appreciated both Rushatz and Ritter’s efforts. Both advanced to the District 11 meet Wednesday.
“Lexi (Rushatz) and Cam (Ritter) are all-around athletes,” said Rusnock. “Lexi is a freshman and she is fearless. Cam has some experience and also the experience of going to states before so he knows what it’s all about. Both have the opportunity to turn some heads at the district meet.
“As a team, it has been nice to have a large group of runners this year that all work super hard. They are always making improvements and it creates good competition.”
Head girls’ soccer coach Randy Gillespie also can recognize Rushatz’s talents and contributions.
“She has been our leading scorer all season and she is pretty tenacious out there,” said Gillespie. “Lexi has a lot of energy and brings it to every game.”
Rushatz credits her parents, Wendy and Todd, for their guidance and support on the athletic fields over the years.
“My parents started me on sports,” she said. “They always have been there to help out. On a Saturday or Sunday, my dad would take me up to the soccer field to work on things.”
Rushatz will have another busy week, as she will run in a district meet Wednesday and play in a soccer playoff game Thursday. It will be a memorable first-time experience.
“I never have been involved in something like this, and I’m looking forward to it,” she said. “I like both sports equally and it has been a lot of fun.”