Northern Star: Danielle Kohlwey
For this week's segment, we sit down with a UMD track senior who recently made program history at the NCAA Tournament.
DULUTH, Minn. – Third time’s the charm for senior Danielle Kohlwey. In her third straight trip to the NCAA Division II Indoor Track and Field Championship, she finally came out on top.
Kohlwey captured the 60-meter hurdle title on Saturday with a time of 8.24 seconds. But going into the weekend, Kohlwey just wanted to enjoy the moment.
“With this being my last one, obviously I would love to win, but if that’s not God’s plan for me, I’m just happy to be there, running with amazing girls and I just hope I run my best and represent UMD well,” Kohlwey said.
She did just that, becoming just the third women’s national indoor champion in program history. Kohlwey attained All-American status on the same event last year, finishing fourth, accomplishing the dreams she hoped she would when she first came to UMD.
“Freshman year, I guess I thought it was a possibility, but never realized how close I would be to podiuming. It’s just really cool to have the coaches I have who support me and really help me get to where I am now, and I really appreciate it,” Kohlwey said.
“She’s developed over time. She didn’t come in being the school record holder and winning conference and being All–American. She’s been phenomenal,” head coach Laura Harmon said.
Kohlwey’s come a long way in her years on the track, but choosing to hurdle came easy to her.
“My mom was actually a hurdler. She doesn’t push me, she obviously wanted me to hurdle because she did, but she’s just so supportive of everything. It comes naturally, but I started in seventh grade on the track team and just loved it,” Kohlwey said.
And now in her last season, she’s using the support she got from her mom to push her teammates. Kohlwey traveled to nationals with freshman Haleigh Reindl and got to enjoy the experience with her and push her to be her best.
“It’s especially special because Haleigh made it so I get a friend going with which is really, really cool,” Kohlwey said.
“Just to watch her compete, it’s crazy how good she is and I just hope I can be that good when I’m a senior,” Reindl said.
While her indoor career is officially in the books, Kohlwey has etched her name in the UMD record books and is thankful for her four years that sprinted by.
“It has gone so fast, everybody tells you when you come in to take it all in, it’s gone in literally two seconds and they’re so right. I can’t believe I’m a senior this year and I’m graduating. It’s just so surreal that this is my last indoor meet, it’s crazy, it goes by so fast,” Kohlwey said.