ROCKFORD – Delaney Appino was one of the strongest distance runners in the Rockford area throughout her high school career, but her running career at the University of Illinois has not gone as planned.
“At the beginning of freshman year I sprained my ankle,” Appino said during an interview at City Market. “Things started to go well again and I was running. Then I pulled something later that year. Sophomore year I dealt with two stress fractures. One in my shin and in the spring I was dealing with one in my femur.”
Appino says her foundation of what she learned at Boylan has helped her through the tough times.
“Without the values Boylan instilled in me over the years I don’t think I would have been as determined or as positive as I’ve tried to be throughout this experience,” she said. “I’m very thankful for that.”
Competing in the Big Ten takes another level of commitment. Delaney appreciates the support she’s received while studying and competing close to home.
“It’s been very nice having my family so close,” Appino said. “If I was ever having a bad day I could call them or it’s a short drive back home. I’m thankful I’ve had such support from the community at Illinois and at home.”
Delaney is also a talented artist and looks forward to passing along her knowledge one day.
“I’m studying art education right now,” she said. “My goal is to become a high school or elementary school art teacher and possibly coach cross country or track. That’s my goal at the moment.”
With her work ethic and attitude, Appino can expect to achieve that goal, along with getting back to her old ways as one of the strongest distance runners around.