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PREP ATHLETICS: Marshall’s Kate Bucher signs National Letter of Intent to compete in cross country, track and field at MSU Mankato

Photo by Sam Thiel Marshall’s Kate Bucher poses for a photo with her family after signing her National Letter of Intent on Tuesday to compete in cross country and track and field at Minnesota State University, Mankato.

MARSHALL — While the freezing temperatures continued to stay, Kate Bucher was ready to turn her focus to spring and her future. The Marshall senior signed her National Letter of Intent to compete in cross country and track and field at Minnesota State University, Mankato on Tuesday morning, surrounded by her family, teammates and coaches.

Bucher was relieved to finally have this day come.

“It’s a big relief off of the shoulders,” Bucher said.

The past few years, Bucher has helped guide the Tigers on the course, court and track. Last season, she was a part of the 4×800 meter relay team that took eighth at the state meet. She also was the top Marshall finisher with a time of 19:12.70 to place 58th at this year’s state cross country meet.

Meanwhile, MSU Mankato is coming off a fall season that saw the Mavericks earn Top 11 finishes in each of their meets, including a first-place finish and sixth-place finishes in both the NSIC and NCAA DII Central Region Championships. This winter, MSU Mankato has placed first in both of its meets during the indoor season.

Bucher said she always knew that she wanted to continue to run and added the campus had the “right at home” feeling she was looking for. She’s also hoping to major in exercise science.

“I really just love running and wanted to keep going,” Bucher said. “Their campus just really felt like home.”

Bucher added her teammates and coaches have had a big impact on her during her time at Marshall and she’s grateful of their support.

“They’ve had a huge impact. I wouldn’t have probably worked as hard as I did without them and just kept pushing through even when times got hard,” Bucher said. “My teammates also are very supportive with [me] doing both sports. They’re always there for me and always cheering me on.”

Before she hits the course and track for the Mavericks next year, Bucher still has one season with the Tiger track team. She said she’s looking forward to competing with her team one more time, particularly the 4×800 relay, and seeing where they can go as a group.

“The 4×800 with my team,” Bucher said. “I just love running with them and doing all I can to see how far we can go.”

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