NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Sports

June 25, 2013

A future in coaching for Cullen

Newburyport native hopes to lead a college program

Three months after graduating from Bates College, Lindsay Cullen plans to return to college.

Cullen, a Newburyport High alumna, recently accepted a position as an assistant coach with the Dickinson College cross-country and track and field teams on the heels of her own cross-country and track career at Bates. Cullen will report to the Carlisle, Pa., campus before the start of cross-country preseason, which is set for Aug. 17.

“I’d like to get into college coaching, and I’m looking more Division 3 because that’s the level I competed at,” Cullen said. “I like the way most Division 3 schools mix athletics and academics. It’s not an athlete’s entire life, like it might be at a state school or university.”

Cullen was a distance specialist at Newburyport High and Bates College. She had a late start in comparison to most collegiate runners due to her dance background. She ran track for the first time as a sophomore in high school. After she flashed some potential in the middle distance events, Newburyport coach Don Hennigar encouraged her to come out for the cross-country team in the fall. By her senior year, she was the top runner on the girls team.

“It wasn’t something I expected,” Cullen said. “I was a dancer at the time, but I quit dance once I saw what I could do running. I made a big decision, but I think it turned out to be the right one.”

Cullen continued to improve at Bates, eventually working her way onto the school’s list of top-10 performances in the 3,000 and 5,000. She was a captain as a senior, filling the role admirably, according to Bates coach Jay Hartshorn.

“She has a really good passion for the sport,” Hartshorn said. “I think she has a really good understanding of team dynamics, how the events fit together, how teams fit together. She’s able to look outside herself and her own performance and see what makes the whole team work.”

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