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Curry making strides in her strength, throwing technique, and distance

BY AMY TIFFANY | JANUARY 25, 2011 7:10 AM

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Rachel Curry was timid and shy the first time she spoke, nervously blurting out too much without knowing it. The information was irrelevant, but this speaks for her ability to trust.

Translating it to athletics — in Curry’s case, throwing the shot put and discus on the women’s track and field team — it speaks to her ability to be confident in her teammates and coaches and to trust the process and time it takes to make improvements.

The redshirt freshman from Homestead, Iowa — around 20 miles up Highway 6 from the Iowa City-Coralville area — commutes to campus every day. The undecided major, who wants to go into medicine, possibly sports training, has emerged in her first indoor track and field season as a consistent contender in meets for the shot put.

True freshman Micaela Haight, who attended West High, competed against Curry in high school. Haight was a junior, Curry a senior.

“We even had that year to push each other back and forth,” Haight said. “She jumped up really big her senior year. We’ve been doing that ever since then. It’s nice to have her here at Iowa, pushing back and forth.”



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Curry’s numbers have statistically been at the top in the team’s meets and practices thus far. She set a personal record in the Iowa Open on Jan. 15 with a throw of 14.08 meters, which landed her first place.

When she talked about her performance at the Jack Johnson Classic (13.86 meters), she was disappointed. Her final throw was good enough to take first place but not far enough to break her personal record.

She wanted better.

“Having someone in front of me like that really pushes me every day to get better, too,” Haight said.

Curry said her goal this weekend when she travels to the Razorback Invitational in Fayetteville, Ark., is to set another personal record. She will try to shoot for 14.30 meters.

Looking even further ahead, she wants to make a difference for the team in the indoor Big Ten meet.

“I think every point counts,” she said. “So I think we can definitely make a difference for our team whether it is just inching out from that eighth to seventh place.”

She attributes both her successes this season and improved injury resistance to her summer training, the continuation of her technique work and strength training.

“You have to start at the base and keep improving,” Curry said.

Assistant coach Scott Cappos, who works with the throwers, said Curry’s consistently coming to the campus training facilities over the summer was the first big step in her improvement.

Training during the fall was the second step in her progress.

“There’s still a lot of things to iron out before she hits the level she and I both want her to hit,” Cappos said. “But she’s made great improvements since the beginning of the season.”


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