Tamaqua's Amber Carroll has no doubt been a big part of what is becoming a Division 1 factory for girl track athletes in the TIMES NEWS area. The Lady Raiders track program has produced numerous Division 1 competitors over the last few seasons and has been the staple for success in District 11.
Carroll has now added her name to that distinguished list. The standout Blue Raider cross country and track star has signed her letter of intent to compete at Division 1 Bucknell University.
Carroll, who has been competing in cross country and track since the middle school ranks never really thought about competing athletically at the next level until her junior year.
"I didn't get serious about playing sports in college until I started looking around for schools to attend last year," said Carroll. "I went to camp at Bucknell over the Summer and I really liked the atmosphere. There's a lot of places to run outside of the training we'll be doing at practice and I like how it's not too big of a campus, but it's not too small either.
The Tamaqua senior had quite a successful run in her time as a Blue Raider.
In cross country Carroll collected a silver and bronze at Leagues and two slivers at the District level and was also a state qualifier on three occasions in her career finishing 63rd, 18th, and 12th.
While competing in track individually she took home gold twice in the 1600 meter run and a bronze in the 800 M at Districts and qualified for States in the 1600 M twice and 3200 M in each of the last three seasons. Carroll also earned a state medal her sophomore year in the 3200 M finishing seventh and finished 11th and 16th in the 1600 M in her sophomore and junior seasons.
It's safe to say that Carroll has been one of the driving forces behind the Lady Raiders cross country and track success over the past two years and her coach Tom Kanger couldn't agree more.
"She's a multi-talented athlete and is always willing to help us out in any way she can," said Kanger. "She's quite a leader who leads by performance and has been great at lifting the spirits of the other girls. She's just been a real joy to work with and it's almost sad to see her go."
Although technically cross country and track are team sports it's no secret the sport is individually based. A certain mentality that it's just you running, and nobody else out there but you, is something that Carroll understands and has excelled in as her time as a competitor.
"When you're out there running there is nobody but you that can push the limit," said Carroll. "You have to be in a mindset where you have nobody else to depend on. You can hear the people cheering and that might help a bit, but at the end of the day it's all on you."
Carroll's goals athletically are to continue to compete at a high level and run at the top with the best of the Bucknell runners. The soon-to-be Bison also has high academic aspirations as well and wants to make a difference when she is finished with her college education.
"I'm going to major in biology and hopefully go into the medical field," said Carroll. "I also want to run a marathon at some point and just keep all these good things going."