Athletes of the Year: Stephanie Radtke

Stephanie Radtke

If you ran into Stephanie Radtke during the daytime over the
past four years, there’s a good chance she was doing one of two
things: Attending a practice or studying.

That’s what I did, school and sports,

Radtke says.
If you ran into Stephanie Radtke during the daytime over the past four years, there’s a good chance she was doing one of two things: Attending a practice or studying.

“That’s what I did, school and sports,” Radtke says.

The senior kept a full schedule during her high school career, competing in cross country, basketball and track all four years.

Radtke admits it was tough to maintain such a hectic pace of activity. But she never wanted to stop. The only thing that forced her to finally slow down this spring was her body – shin splints forced Radtke to ease up during her final track season.

The injury came as a shock to the runner, who had stayed healthy through most of her four years. And there was nothing she could do to heal, except ice her legs and rest.

“(Shin splints) are like this long, lasting pain in the legs,” Radtke says.

“I just walked around school and could feel my legs burning.”

Still, Radtke, a former competitive dancer, likes to look back at her career in a positive light and remember the highlights, like when she PR’d at the Central Coast Section Cross Country meet last fall and finished 21st. Or this year’s TCAL Finals, when the senior left the track crying after the mile race, thinking she didn’t finish high enough to qualify for the CCS Semifinals. She found out two hours later at the GHS Senior Dinner and Dance that she had.

“I feel bad saying that (my injury has been a challenge),” Radtke says. “So many others have huge injuries.”

The senior wants to continue her running career at West Valley College in the fall. From there, she hopes to transfer to a state school in Southern California. Among her goals are running a marathon and pursuing a career that combines child psychology and sports.

“I want a job that makes a difference in someone’s life,” Radtke says.

The Radtke File

Cross Country, Track, Basketball

• Qualified for the Central Coast Section Cross Country Meet as a freshman, sophomore and senior.

• 2004 CCS Track and Field finalist (1600 meters)

• Three-sport athlete all four years at Gilroy High

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