Saints Esposito Excited to Receive A.O. Duer Award - News, Sports and Weather

Saints Esposito Excited to Receive A.O. Duer Award

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The A. O. Duer Scholarship is an award given to the top male and female junior student athletes in the NAIA. In it's 48 years of existence, it's only been awarded to to three Carroll Saints: quarterback Tyler Emmert in 2004, track and volleyball player Kathleen Mulligan in 2014, and now Saints All American runner Leah Esposito.

"My coach wanted to put me up for it, and so he asked me to get some letters of recommendation," said Esposito. "He did most of it though."

Well it certainly wasn't her coach that was an All American in indoor track as well as cross country last year, and it wasn't her coach that took home the National title in the indoor 1000-meters. But Leah still attributes her success to the program at Carroll College.

"It's been extremely great to see the program grow," said Esposito. "I know Kathleen won it two years ago, so to have two people win this prestigious award so close together I think speaks for the track program."

"Leah has just worked really hard, and she's talented, put in the hours of studying and training, and for her to get it, it's awesome," said Saints cross country head coach David Morris.

Along with being a three sport athlete Leah is also a 4.0 student studying biology, but it was her commitment outside of the classroom, and in the community since she was in high school at Helena high, that really sealed the deal for her award.

"I got a letter from my youth minister, Cathy Olsen, we did a few community service activities when I was still in high school," said Esposito. "We also volunteer at the track meets, the high school track meets."

And because Leah is such a giving person, I asked her if she had any tips for runners that one day want to be as good as she is.

"During a workout I just like to break it up into pieces and just be like 'Okay, just one more repeat, just one more, just one more,'" said Esposito. "Kind of makes it seem shorter than it actually is."

The A.O Duer Scholarship is an award for juniors, and Leah Esposito is clearly deserving. Expect her to add even more hardware to the trophy case before her college career

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