Each week throughout the fall, CisternYard Sports will be featuring a senior athlete at the College of Charleston who has made an impact on his or her respective team. This week, we sat down with Trish Rein from the women’s cross country team.

Trish Rein has become an integral part of the Cougars' women's cross country team since walking on during her sophomore year. Photo courtesy of CofCSports.com.

Trish Rein (center) has become an integral part of the Charleston women’s cross country team since walking on during her sophomore year.
Photo courtesy of CofCSports.com.

Arriving as a freshman at the College of Charleston, Trish Rein was determined to become a runner for the women’s cross country team.

Originally from Philadelphia, Pa., she was a soccer player-turned-runner in high school that had a love for running from the beginning. Now a college senior, Rein reflects on her time competing for the school, her accomplishments, and what’s in store for the future.

After competing on the track and field and cross country teams from her sophomore through senior year of high school, Rein realized her passion to become a collegiate cross country athlete was a serious one.

“At first, [running] was just a way to hang out with friends, but then I really started to like it. There’s something addicting about running. Some people think I’m crazy for running distance, but it’s what I love to do,” Rein said.

Rein walked-on to the Charleston cross country team during her sophomore year. She made a quick, smooth transition with the help of head coach Amy Seago and the rest of her team.

“I really have to thank my coach for giving me the opportunity and taking a chance on me. The girls were so welcoming—my biggest fear was that I was going to be the new person who didn’t fit. They took me right in and showed me the ropes,” she said.

Rein, a Philadelphia native, switched from soccer to running in her sophomore year of high school. Photo courtesy of CofCSports.com.

Rein, a Philadelphia native, switched from soccer to running in her sophomore year of high school.
Photo courtesy of CofCSports.com.

Rein quickly proved to be a valuable asset to the team with impressive times and personal achievements. In 2013, she started her second season with the Cougars strong, earning a sixth place overall finish at the Carolina Challenge. She posted a personal record of 19:03.58, a time that was a near 30 second improvement over her performance on the same course in the previous season.

She continued to lead the Cougars at the Furman Cross Country Classic, where she posted a 6K time of 21:57.94, and at the Towson Invitational, posting a 5K time of 18:32.68. She rounded out her 2013 season strong, turning the second lowest Charleston time at the CAA Championships.

Picking up where she left off, Rein claimed her first event victory in the 3,000 meter run at the opening track and field event of 2014. She also posted the best Charleston time at the 2014 Furman Classic at 22:37.05.

When asked what it was like to be a leader of the team as a senior, she was quick to praise and admire the freshman runners for their commitment and enthusiasm.

“They work hard and know the drill, which make my job as an upperclassman on the team much easier. Because of their dedication, I enjoy working with them, encouraging them, and helping them find their place,” Rein said.

When Rein isn’t on the track, you can usually find her participating in off-campus research in her academic field of psychology. She has big plans for the future, with aspirations to go to graduate school for neuroscience. She is intent on continuing to run, maybe even knocking a marathon off her bucket list.

When it comes to inspiration both on and off the track, she looks to her mom as her muse.

“She isn’t a competitive runner, but she has always instilled that drive in me to do and pursue whatever I want. She inspires me in all aspects of my life and helps me get to where I want to be,” she said.

And being entirely candid, Rein pointed out that running around a track or a course isn’t quite like other sports.

“Running is weird. It’s not like field sports where your competition is right in front of you,” Rein said. “It’s a competition against yourself and the clock. It’s a mental and self motivated sport, which makes it so competitive.”

This sense of self-competition fuels her drive to continue to push herself in every race she enters, with her favorite being the 5K.

“I love the 5K. It’s just long enough so that it tests my stamina, but short enough so that I can remain competitive,” she said.

Previous “Senior Spotlight” editions: Adam Seften (men’s XC)

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