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Athlete of the Issue: Victoria Patterson
Talbot Von Stade '20 Staff Writer
November 8, 2019

Since stepping onto campus her freshman year, Victoria Patterson ’20 has been an incredible runner and example of a Deerfield student-athlete. In her four years at Deerfield, she has competed in countless races and has led the Deerfield Cross Country and Track Teams to many victories, including New England championships.

As described in her Athlete of the Week election by her coaches in September of 2016, her fall freshman season, “Ninth grader Victoria Patterson finished first in the Division I girls’ race at the Canterbury Invitational at the Canterbury School in Connecticut on Saturday. She took the lead before the quarter mile mark and never looked back, expanding the differential to over 30 seconds by the finish. She led Deerfield to a very comfortable second place team finish, besting ten other teams.” Beginning in 2016 and extending to her fall senior season, Patterson has been extremely successful.

Credit: Victoria Patterson

In 2017, Patterson helped lead the girls team to uphold an undefeated fall season. She currently holds the 3,000 meter, 1,500 meter, 1 mile, and 2 mile record titles at Deerfield. Her accomplishments have also represented Deerfield Academy far from the valley, specifically last March when she finished 13th at the New Balance Indoor National Track and Field Championships at the New York Armory.

When asked what Deerfield Cross Country means to her, Patterson said, “I often describe DAGXC as a family. The girls on the team are some of my closest friends, and every day I look forward to seeing them at practice. We bond over our love of running, and we push through painful speed workouts and races together.”

Serving as the Varsity captain her junior and senior years, Patterson has been a role model for younger runners. When commenting on Patterson’s leadership, co-captain Grace Russell ’21 said, “Victoria has always been super supportive of all the girls on the team and a really good example of what it means to work hard. Co-captaining with her has been great, and she is always looking for ways to improve the team.”

With three more races left in the season, the Girls’ Cross Country team will face Andover, NMH, and other top tier schools at New Englands on Nov. 9th, 2019. So far this season, the team has faced tough opponents such as Exeter, Westminster, and St. Paul’s under Patterson’s leadership.

A few weeks ago, Patterson verbally committed to Duke University, where she will continue her academic and athletic career. Patterson will bring her superb talents, leadership, and work ethic to Duke, where she hopes to accomplish many things.

Credit: Victoria Patterson

Patterson said, “While I am at Duke, I plan to run cross country, indoor track, and outdoor track. Within those three seasons, I aspire to be an ACC champion and NCAA Division 1 All-American. Ultimately, I would like to run professionally while going to medical school, so achieving the milestones within the NCAA will be the first step in continuing my running career. I would also like to grow in my knowledge and love of running through the guidance of my future coach, Rhonda Riley.”

Looking back on her impactful experiences at Deerfield, Patterson said, “One of my most influential coaches, Dr. Cullinane, took me under his wing my freshman year and developed me as a runner. I owe all of my cross country and track related accomplishments to him. He inspired me through his passion for running, and he shepherded me through my freshman, sophomore, and junior years. I would not be a nationally ranked athlete without his wisdom and guidance.”

Patterson is an exemplary Deerfield student-athlete who will leave an enormous legacy with our Cross Country and Track and Field program. As she moves on to Duke University, she will continue to represent the Big Green while continuing her remarkable success.