Player of the Week

Player of the Week

Senior co-captain Zara Northover won the shot put and weight throw in the Huskies’ second-place finish at the New England Championship last weekend. Northover has been dominant during the indoor season, winning every shot put competition she had entered. But it is a fluke she is in the sport at all.

The Northeastern News Player of the Week was a three-sport athlete in high school and president of her class. During her junior year a conflict in her schedule forced her to quit basketball, but she joined the track team to keep in shape.

“I originally went out as a runner but my friend needed a partner for the shot put relay,” Northover said. “I ended up joining her and without ever practicing, we won the event. That same year I won states and my senior year I was a high school All-American.”

Northover had been urged to try the sport throughout her childhood but had passed on it for more traditional sports like volleyball, softball and basketball.

“It was something that people had encouraged me to get into but I didn’t want to because I thought the girls were so big and it was such an ugly sport,” Northover said. “But it became the thing I am very good at and now I have such an appreciation for the sport. Once you get to a certain level you are fighting to get just inches onto each throw.”

Seven years after she fell into the shot put, she is transitioning her technique to get better and hopes to make her way to the 2008 Olympics. Northover is switching from the glide technique that relies on pure power to the rotation, which relies on speed and momentum.

“I competed this summer for the Jamaican National team in the Central American and Caribbean Championships in Columbia,” Northover said. “When I was there I was up against a 300-pound girl from Cuba who is one of the best throwers in the world this year. I realized that people who use the glide are bigger and it was clear that I would benefit from switching to the rotation.”

Northover made the switch and is working on qualifying for the NCAA Championship for the indoor season. Her last chance is this weekend at the ECAC Championship at the Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center.

“They take the top 16 to the NCAA and right now I am around 20th in the country,” Northover said. “So now the pressure is on to get the mark I need to get an invitation to Arkansas, where the NCAA Championship will be over spring break.”

– Erika Carrubba, News Staff

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