The Ultimate athlete is a student who trains hard and is committed to excellence, on and off the field. Their work ethic, dedication, determination, and mental toughness is what makes these athletes truly exceptional. Each week the Country Herald will support these incredible student-athletes in our series, The Ultimate.
This week’s Ultimate is Amelia Conroy, a junior at Bishop McNamara Catholic High School. Amelia is a three-sport athlete that plays tennis, basketball and soccer. Amelia was the goalkeeper for the Lady Irish soccer team, who recently won their first Regional Championship in the school’s history. Described by her soccer coach, Marty Ruberry, “Amelia is a very hard-working dedicated player. She is always positive towards her teammates and she is a leader. She is very hard-working in the classroom. Amelia also is a very good competitor and she wants to win.”
“Amelia is a very hard-working dedicated player. She is always positive towards her teammates and she is a leader. She is very hard-working in the classroom. Amelia also is a very good competitor and she wants to win.”– Marty Ruberry, Lady Irish Soccer Team Coach
Amelia, how do your teammates make practice fun?
My teammates on all of my sports teams are some of my best friends, so I love spending whatever time I can to hang out with them. We are always there to support each other through good and bad times. Also, we all love to joke around with each other which makes practices and games so much better.
When did you first get involved in sports?
I started playing soccer through Dynamo when I was seven years old. Then when I turned nine years old I began to play basketball at my old elementary/junior high school. Then, during my sophomore year of high school, I decided I wanted to try something new so I took up tennis.
Who would you say is a hero in your life?
The hero in my life would have to be my mother.
What do you admire about your mother?
I admire the way that she is always there for me and my sisters. Through it all, even the rough and stressful moments of her life I can always count on her to come to my games, or drive me around, or pay for extra practices and new equipment. She is my biggest supporter and I’m very grateful to have her.
What are your future aspirations after high school? Also, do you have a plan in place to fulfill your dreams?
After high school I do plan to attend college, whether or not I will continue to play sports in college is still undecided. And I have also not completely determined what I want to pursue career-wise, but I am working on trying to figure it all out.
Would you happen to know what college you would like to attend after high school?
Unfortunately, no, I do not know yet what college I want to attend after high school. I have been trying to research and come up with some ideas though.
Have you ever had any nail-biting incidents that have had a happy ending?
I would not call it a nail-biter, but winning regionals for soccer for the very first time in history was definitely a great incident with a very happy ending.
Would you happen to have a favorite song to listen to prior to competing?
For a lot of my sports, the entire team likes to listen to music altogether with a speaker, so it is usually whatever the team is listening to at the moment.
Is it difficult for you to balance sports with school work?
Yes, sometimes it can be very difficult, and it can certainly be stressful. Because of the school I go to, and the classes I take, I do get an abundant amount of homework, so sometimes it can be difficult to find time to do that, and find time to practice, and play games. Because of that, I do try to do my homework during the school day and I try to leave as little as I can for when I get home.
Have you had any serious injuries?
I have actually been blessed to never have a very serious injury. The worse injuries I have had are a few sprained ankles.
How did you deal with these injuries?
I dealt with these by giving myself a short break and staying off of my feet for a couple of days so that they could have time to heal.
What is a typical day like in the life of Amelia?
During the school year, a typical day for me begins with waking up and getting ready to go to school. During the school day, I try to be aware of what I may have for homework, and I try to work on it throughout the day as well. After school is dismissed, I go and see the physical trainer, and then it’s off to some sort of practice. After practice is over, I usually will go home and start working on my homework. Depending on what time I get done with my homework I sometimes may spend the rest of the night hanging out and relaxing with my family.
What do you do to calm your butterflies while you compete?
Whenever I get nervous I like to just take some deep breaths, maybe listen to music, and sometimes I will talk to my teammates about the team we are about to play and our game plan to try and beat them.
What would you say the role of a sports parent is?
I believe that the role of a sports parent involves the parent to be supportive and encouraging towards their child.
What would you say the role of the athlete’s coach?
The role of a coach is to actually coach the athletes on the sport and to be there to give constructive criticism to the athlete to make them better.
What are some words of encouragement you would give a younger athlete?
I would say that you just have to stick with it, and to try new things. There have definitely been times where I have gotten down on myself or something had happened to make me doubt my abilities. And almost all athletes will go through these feelings at some point in their athletic career. You just have to remember to keep playing and to always try your best. I would also tell a younger athlete to try some new things. In fact, all of the sports I play today began with a spur of the moment decision to try something new and end with me loving a new sport and having a new favorite activity. And also, as cheesy as it sounds remember to have fun because soon it’s all going to fly past you.
Know a local athlete that you believe is The Ultimate? Tell us who you would like spotlighted by completing the form here, at gocorn.org/athlete.