Student Athlete of the Week: Frances Newman

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 SPORTS) -- When Charlottesville's Frances Newman hits the course it is a chance to take a break from a busy schedule.

"Sometimes I space out, sometimes I think about what I'm doing after so I'm not focusing on the running," Newman said, a senior cross country runner for CHS.

For Newman that break is brief with playing in the CHS marching band and classwork taking up the rest of her time, but she says this time running allows her to focus.

"Definitely helps me be less stressed in the classroom," Newman said, "But it also helps with my focus. My teammates help with my focus, so I can kind of carry that into the classroom."

After fours years, Newman is now the captain of the cross country team...and while that usually means helping younger teammates, this year it meant helping a new coach along.

"Right from the beginning of the season, especially because I was new to cross country here at Charlottesville," CHS cross country Coach Kathleen Druzba said, "I didn't even meet her yet, she was emailing me to trying to make the transition for me very easily."

Despite cross country being all about individual numbers, Newman sees a different side as a leader now.

"They're relying on me and I'm relying on them," Newman said "It's very individual in terms of time, but I think since we encourage each other so much we want to do well for each other."

While her time as captain is short, the impact of Newman's example both on the course and in the classroom will last past her days on the team.

"There's a lot of kids that are going to follow her lead and because she had such a great example this year and years prior to this," Druzba said, "They're going to step in and follow what she's already lead."

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