Cushing's Kirsten McCormack

Courtesy photo

Cushing two-sport athlete Kirsten McCormack, who was very busy in other extra-curricular activities as well, was hoping to qualify for the State Track & Field Meet this year.

The sports staff at The Daily Sentinel understands the difficult times that not only student-athletes and coaches have been going through over the past several weeks, but also parents, family members and fans because of the effects of COVID-19 (coronavirus).

The Daily Sentinel would like to run senior profiles of student-athletes from the spring sports in an individual published bio, with a photo, in a series called “An Inside Look at Our Champions.”

If you are a senior from one of the area schools of Stephen F. Austin, Nacogdoches, Central Heights, Douglass, Cushing, Alto, Mount Enterprise, Woden, Martinsville, Chireno, Garrison, Timpson, Tenaha, Center or San Augustine, or are a family member who would like to encourage a student-athlete to do so, have the senior answer the questions below (the first 10 must be answered) and email them to, along with their cell phone number and a favorite photo (identifying those in the photo) and we will run it as space becomes available. Encourage athletes to do this during this time of social distancing.

Today, we’re featuring Cushing basketball and track & field athlete Kirsten McCormack:

Name: Kirsten McCormack

School: Cushing High School

Parent(s) names: Patsy Thomas

Sports participate in: Basketball and track & field

Why you became a student-athlete: I became a student-athlete because I personally feel like it brings me closer to the community. I believe that being a student-athlete is a full-time job. You have school work, practices and games/meets to plan around. I love the feeling of the community constantly supporting us no matter what the outcome may be. Younger students look up to many high school athletes and that is yet another reason why becoming a student-athlete was such a great honor.

Awards you have received while in high school: National Honor society; academic excellence (8th-12th); Noble Scholar; Bearkat Honor Roll; regional qualifier for high jump; second-team all-district for basketball (11th); and Offensive MVP for basketball (12th).

Highlight of your high school career so far: The highlight of my high school career is being a part of such a close basketball team. This year my team was closer than ever before and I loved playing with them. We were truly a family and I would give anything to get just one more game with all of them!

Plans after high school: After high school, I plan on attending Tarleton State University and majoring in Animal Science. I am currently talking to them about riding for their stock show team. If that doesn’t work out I would like to try out for their track team as a walk-on.

What colleges, if any, are you considering attending, and what are you thinking of majoring in and why? I plan on attending Tarleton State University to pursue a degree in Animal Science and get my Equine Certification. My top goal is to become an Animal Physiotherapist. Animals have always been a huge part of my life and I would like to continue that.

Favorite song: Any Read Southall it Parker Mccollum song!

Favorite food: Any kind of fruit!

Favorite TV show: Criminal Minds

Favorite movie: 8 seconds

Your role models and why: (Cushing basketball) Coach Crofford has always been a role model to me. She proved to all of the basketball girls that you can do anything you set your mind to. She is such a hard worker and such an amazing leader through Christ. Another one of my role models are Kobe Bryant. He always gave 110% every game and his work ethic was amazing. I strive to be half as good as he ever was.

The coach(es) who have influenced you the most and why: Coach Cristin Crofford, because she pushes me to my limit and showed me that I was capable of doing things that I never even imagined of doing.

Your favorite teacher and why: My favorite teacher is my English teacher, Mrs. Umbrell. She has always been my go-to person if anything is wrong, school-wise or just in general. I always know that she will help me if I ever need it.

What are you missing the most about not playing your sport? I was only two inches away from (qualifying for) State last year in high jump. All year I have been dead set to break my record and finally make it to state, every athlete’s dream. It breaks my heart that I am not even able to try and make that dream come true.

Something that makes the team you are a part of so special: My track team is full of wonderful people who always encourage one-another. They are truly a team family and I couldn’t be more thankful for them.

Who are some people you miss watching you play and what does it mean to you to have their support when you’re out there? My mom tried to come to every sporting event. I personally think it’s just a little more sentimental to her because I am her only child. But we never thought that last year at regionals would be my last meet. Although she cannot be out on the track with me, it makes me feel confident that I can do anything I set my mind to when she is there.

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