By Kyle Yager — Staff Writer
Kennedy Thomson is a freshman cross-country and track & field member who just finished up her first semester with an impactful cross-country campaign. It has been a trying transition, as Thomson hails from Ontario, Canada.
“It has definitely been a transition,” said Thomson. “Even the culture is so different, it was kind of a culture shock. At the beginning of the year, my roommate would follow me around and correct me on everything I said because I would say things like ‘washroom’ instead of ‘bathroom’.”
As a Canadian, Thomson had a much different experience when it came to her childhood and youth sports than the traditional American.
“Obviously it was a little bit colder back home,” said Thomson. “Our seasons are a little bit different. I know in college here they have a huge emphasis on the outdoor season, where as in the Canadian University system they don’t have an outdoor season, so their season is only indoors. It makes the sports we play a little bit different. I played hockey growing up and we had all the winter sports like that.”
Thomson was destined for a career in sports, as she comes from a family that runs thick with athletic blood.
“My sister rows in college and my brother played hockey in college,” said Thomson. “We were a really active family growing up. I have four older siblings and all of them played sports. Even now, my siblings still play sports.”
Chattanooga is a quite a long way from Ontario. Still, Thomson knew she had found her new home right off the bat.
“When I was recruited here Coach Gautier was the head coach and he had brought in a whole bunch of different Canadians, such as Lanni Marchant,” said Thomson. “She was a Canadian who went to the Olympics. There have been a lot of people from my region in Ontario who have gone to UTC. Once I took my visit I knew.”
Thomson was a very talented athlete throughout her youth, and she had opportunities to play multiple sports collegiately. Her fondness for running was what ultimately made her decision.
“I love running,” said Thomson. “It’s honestly one of those sports. My heart was always more in running. It just so happened it was the opportunity I was able to pursue. I really lucked out and I’m grateful I was able to pick the sport I liked most.”
It can be tough getting acclimated to a new team, and it was no different for Thomson at first. As the season progressed, the team formed a cohesive bond, which aided them in success late in the season.
“The beginning of the season was hard, especially for the freshman because it was new for us,” said Thomson. “I think our team, because we do so much together and we spent so much time together, was able to really help each other through the rest of the season.”
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