This story originally appeared in the student newspaper Xchange, and was written by Kate Linderman.
From the state track meet to the NCAA Division III National Championship, 2017 graduate Aspen Rolfes has made a quick and successful transition. On March 10, Rolfes became a national champion in the 4×400 relay representing Nebraska Wesleyan University.
“It was an amazing experience,” she said. “There’s really nothing like it.”
Rolfes began practices with the Nebraska Wesleyan track team in September and has been training since then. She referred to college track as a “wake up call” compared to high school track. Throughout the intense practices, she said college has given her a greater sense of how to be a good teammate.
“I am not only running for myself but for my whole team,” she stated.
She said the biggest difference between high school and college track is that everybody cheers for each other.
“There were so many people supporting us,” Rolfes added. “Even the other athletes from other teams congratulated us.”
The transition from running for Pius X to Nebraska Wesleyan was quick, but Rolfes was ready for the challenge.
“Pius track defiantly did prepare me for college because of the constant support I had from Coach O’Boyle, Coach Rice, Coach Psota, and my teammates,” Rolfes said. “They always pushed me so I could use all of my potential.”
She said the workouts were tough, but she was well prepared for the state meet.
Rolfes looks to stay with the 4×400 relay all four years, hoping to win the national championship again.
She concluded, “I know that with my coaches at Wesleyan and the program they have set up I can do some great things!”