From Orange and Black to Blue and Gold: Feuchtenberger signs to continue running career at ETSU

Published 8:18 pm Friday, April 21, 2017

When your name is brought up with the likes of Angie Barker, there must be something going right.
And that’s the case when it comes to Elizabethton High School senior Heather Feuchtenberger.
Just one day removed from a Three Rivers Conference that saw the Lady Cyclone haul in three first place finishes and one second place nod, Feuchtenberger made things official on Friday, April 21, by signing to continue her running career at East Tennessee State University during a ceremony hosted in the high school’s commons area.
EHS track and field coach Leslee Bradley said it was an exciting day to honor the track team’s G.O.A.T. (Greatest of all Time) runner.
“I would definitely argue that Heather is the greatest female runner of all time in EHS history,” Bradley told attendees at the signing. “I would have to say that Angie Barker is the GOAT of the entire program as she won multiple state titles and still holds school and state records.”
Feuchtenberger and Barker each saw their careers draw a similarity that’s to their collegiate choice.
“(Angie) went on to ETSU to become a national champion,” Bradley said with a smile, indicating Feuchtenberger had the ability to follow suit.
Feuchtenberger’s resume showcases the Lady Cyclone has the tools available to make that case the program next year. The runner holds school records in the 400, 800, and 1600 meter runs and the DMR. After being encouraged to take part in cross country, Feuchtenberger decided to make a record in that program too.
The ability to work hard came from coaches and teammates, Feuchtenberger said.
“We’ve got great coaches and a great atmosphere,” she added about the program. “We’ve been blessed to have the facilities we have and the opportunities available for us.”
While success continues to pour it, it didn’t come easy according to coach Bradley.
Stress fractures and emotions hampered production her first two years at the school, but the coach added that it was Feuchtenberger’s work ethic that saw her flip the switch beginning her junior season.
“During the summer between her sophomore and junior years, Heather changed,” Bradley said. “She knew she needed a better attitude and approached coach (Amber) Abel before cross country practice to tell her that she was turning over a new leaf and that she was going to trust us as her coaches to have her best interest in mind and accept the things we are asking her to do.”
It was a tale of two halves, with Feuchtenberger’s junior and senior seasons in both XC and track and field netting high marks.
A highly-touted recruit, the senior, stated that the Buccaneers were on her radar early on during the recruiting cycle.
“It was definitely in there,” Feuchtenberger said about ETSU being a top pick. “But once I went there and saw their running program and their philosophies … I thought it was so awesome. It reminded so much of Coach Bradley.”
ETSU Director of Track and Field/Cross Country George Watts handles the leadership of both running programs.
But while ETSU is a year off, Feuchtenberger is ready to conclude 2017 on a high note.
“It’s been an exciting week,” she said. “I’m looking forward to seeing how we perform and hope we can make it to state.”

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