(Cover photo: Bullitt Central senior Kayley Strange, right, with a teammate)
Every week, the Louisville Women Sports Network highlights a local athlete by asking her 20 profile questions. This week’s athlete is Kayley Strange, a senior distance runner for this past season’s cross country team at Bullitt Central. She also swims and plays lacrosse. If there is an athlete you’d like to read about, email suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
1) What is your nickname and how did you get it?
I got my nickname “Copperhead Girl” during my sophomore year at a cross country camp. My coach and I were near the back of a group run, jogging along a trail with the rest of the campers. We heard some screaming near the front of the group, but didn’t think anything about it. We just jogged on. I didn’t see it, but apparently the screaming was because there was a copperhead snake along the trail eating a mouse. My coach states that I came within a few inches of stepping on it. That is how I got my nickname, “Copperhead Girl”.
2) What is your number and why did you choose it?
In Cross Country, we don’t get to choose numbers. We get a new one at each race. I actually enjoy getting a new number every meet. It is like it’s a new chance to prove yourself. You start with a clean slate and go from there.
3) What is your favorite subject in school?
I really enjoy history. I have actually taken every possible history course at my school. I find it very interesting to learn about how the world worked in the past. It is amazing to me to see how far we have come- socially, technologically, mechanically, etc. I love the past; it was a different world.
4) What are your academic goals?
My goal by the end of this year is to graduate with above a 4.0 because I will graduate with honors at my school. I try my best to get all A’s and make sure to have good academic habits. If I instill these good habits now, then I can continue them in college.
5) What are your athletic goals?
My athletic goal for this year was to enjoy my last season of cross country. I don’t want to set a number goal because I know I do my best at each race. If I do my best, that is all that matters.
6) What is your favorite athletic moment?
We have this hill in Shepherdsville that we call “Conestoga”. It is this crazy huge, mile-long hill. My favorite athletic moment was running over that hill freshman year and looking down upon Shepherdsville. It made me feel like I was on top of the world. From then on, I knew I could do anything I set my mind to. I just had to push myself out of my comfort zone and go after it.
7) What is your ideal meal/snack before a game?
Before a meet, I typically like to have half of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich and a banana. Peanut butter gives me protein, and the sugar/carbs from the bread and jelly give me energy. The banana typically calms my nerves. It is the perfect snack!
8) What is your favorite Louisville restaurant?
There is a pizza place right on Eastern Parkway and Bardstown Rd. called BoomBozz. It is my absolute favorite place to get pizza. I love it there!
9) What athlete do you most look up to? Why?
He isn’t an athlete now, but I really look up to Jackie Robinson. I find him so courageous and brave to play baseball with the Brooklyn Dodgers during a time of segregation. I aspire to have that bravery throughout my life. He took so many hits from a lot of different people, but kept playing the game he loved.
10) How have sports impacted and/or inspired your life?
I have been involved in sports since I was three years old with the YMCA. Sports have allowed me to stay active and involved in my community. Since high school started, they have been a way for me to relieve stress for a little bit. Cross country, specifically has taught me how important it is to have a healthy body and lifestyle. These are things that I know I can continue throughout my life.
11) What is your favorite movie?
My favorite movie is “About Time” with Domhnall Gleeson and Rachel McAdams. It is a love story, but it also teaches you to appreciate life in the good times and trying times because it goes by fast.
12) If they made a movie about your life, what actor would play you?
The actress who would play me would be Anna Kendrick. Many people in the past year have come up to me randomly and told me how much I look like Anna Kendrick. I take it as a tremendous compliment. I also find that her humor and love for singing matches mine.
13) What is your favorite TV show?
My favorite TV show is “Friends”. I got the box set with all 10 seasons for my birthday last year. I think that show is so funny and the characters are amazing. It is an enjoyable show to watch in my opinion.
14) What song do you listen to when getting ready for a game?
Lately, the song I have been listening to is “Fight Song” by Rachel Platten. It gets me excited to run every time I listen to it. I also sing it in my head while I am running so I can set a pace and get some motivation.
15) What is your favorite book?
I just recently read “Pride and Prejudice” by Jane Austen and I think that is my new favorite book. It is an amazing love story, but it also shows growth of the two main characters. I really love the New England 1800s’ language. It made me feel like I was transported to that time while I was reading it. Jane Austen is magical.
16) What is your favorite color?
Mint green is my favorite color. I love pastels.
17) If you were on a desert island and could have one possession, what would it be?
I would like to have a helicopter or a lighter. A helicopter so I could get off the island, but if I couldn’t get off the island then I would like to have a lighter so that I could start a fire because I do not know how to start one on my own.
18) Who do you consider to be today’s best female role model for young women?
I find that Malala Yousafzai is an amazing role model for young women today. She is an advocate for girls’ rights in the Middle East and even survived an assassination attempt. She is the perfect example of bravery and I feel like all young women should have some bravery in today’s age. If you want something, go after it! The only thing holding you back is you.
19) If you could pick one person, dead or alive, and ask them just one question that they had to answer honestly, who would you pick and what would you ask?
I would ask my friend, who passed away last year, if he knows how much I love and miss him and ask him if he misses and loves me too.
20) What is the best advice you have ever received and who gave it to you?
The best advice I have ever gotten was from my mom. She told me, “Whatever you do, just make sure you are happy. Do everything in life with happiness because it goes by fast.”