Mike O’Brien ‘23
Chief Sports Editor
In our next edition of the Spire’s weekly Athlete Spotlight, I was able to speak with Carrie Malatesta ‘21 from the Women’s Crew team who’s also a member of the team’s leadership committee for this season.
Over her career throughout being on the team, Malatesta notes her favorite memory as “a race against Colgate in April, 2019. It was the first race of our spring season and all four boats racing beat Colgate; starting the season with a win for all crews was an amazing feeling.”
Outside of her membership on the team, Malatesta is a bright student as a political science major who has been on the Patriot League Honor Roll for two years. She is also a program director for the Big Brother Big Sister site of SPUD and a member of the Education Department Student Advisory Committee.
Below are some of the questions I was able to ask Carrie on how life and training went for her over the last couple of months.
Q: Like so many other senior athletes across the country, this fall season being lost has been a very difficult situation. What can you take away from this experience and use towards having a productive spring championship season?
A: The biggest take away from this cancellation of this fall season has been to enjoy every moment. It’s easy to get lost in the routine of practice, lift and meetings sometimes and forget to appreciate time spent together as a team and what those little moments mean.
Q: As a coxswain, it is your responsibility to keep your teammates motivated and on course during a race. How do you believe you were able to do that while the team was forced to be apart during these last couple of months?
A: One of the biggest switches as a coxswain in a virtual environment has been finding ways to keep everyone connected while physically apart. Team Zoom meetings, sharing workout tips and staying connected via Groupme has been one of the biggest ways to keep everyone motivated and on course.
Q: Because of the pandemic, this presumably presented less chances to be out on the water with other members of the team. How were you able to keep your skills sharp and stay in shape even when you weren’t on the boat?
A: Mindfulness and reflection have been the biggest tools in order to stay sharp as a coxswain while not on the water, remembering past races and practices and reflecting upon what could have gone better and changes to implement once back on the water has been one of my bigger methods to retain skills. Many rowers have access to erg machines while not on the water so that has been a big tool in order to stay in shape, as well as getting creative with lifting and cross training from home.
Q: What is the biggest piece of advice you would give to underclassmen athletes as you prepare for your final season of being a Holy Cross athlete?
A: College athletics are an amazing opportunity, although being a student athlete requires sacrifices and personal accountability, your team becomes your family and my greatest memories at Holy Cross are with my teammates. Even in the tough moments everything pays off, the lift you were stressed during or the practice you spent thinking about an exam, although those were stressful moments the experience of seeing your teammates succeed on the race course makes all of the tough practice moments worth it. Enjoy every moment and embrace every opportunity!
Q: What else were you involved with over the last couple of months that kept you motivated and focused during the summer?
A: I spent this past summer working at a socially distanced camp as a group leader. Having a set schedule during the summer helped me to structure a set workout routine and maintain focus, I enjoy being busy so filling up the day helped me to stay motivated.
Thanks again to Carrie for sharing her experiences during these times and best of luck to the women’s crew team in their forthcoming competitions.