Q and A with Katie Wild

By Jessica Warchall

Katie Wild, senior co-captain of the women’s gymnastics team, led the team to the South Central Regional in Fayetteville, Ark., for the third time in a row. Wild continues to be a strong competitor and leader on the team as she has competed beam and floor consistently in all 12 meets for the Illini this season.

Q: What is the best thing about Illinois gymnastics?

A: The team feeling. It’s more than just a team, it’s a family. We come into the gym and depend on each other for support.

Q: What will you miss most about Illinois gymnastics after you graduate?

A: Seeing my friends everyday and having the same goals and working toward the same things as they do.

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Q: Does the team have any rituals before a meet?

A: Not as a team, we just all know each other’s rituals. Somebody will eat a certain thing or put sparkles in their hair – I did that last week on a whim. I don’t normally do that.

Q: Do you have a specific ritual?

A: I have to eat the same type of granola bar throughout practice, and I’ll eat only a certain amount before I go to beam and floor during a meet.

Q: What is one thing you can’t live without?

A: Chocolate.

Q: What is the best part of Regional competition?

A: Being with the best of the best and knowing you are there because you are the best.

Q: What is the hardest thing about being a co-captain?

A: Knowing what to say and when to say it. As a captain people really look up to you and you want to be able to help them so much, and you’re not sure if you are saying the right things when people are struggling.

Q: What is your biggest success at Illinois?

A: Being consistent. I’ve done beam and floor every meet for the last three years, so being able to contribute and having my scores count are my biggest successes.

Q: What do you plan on doing with a Spanish degree and pre-dental focus after you graduate?

A: I’m going to dental school at the University of Minnesota. I want to be a dentist because you can see the results right away and see people improving immediately.

Q: What is your favorite thing to do outside of gymnastics?

A: As far as sports go, I really like to water ski and snow ski.

Q: What is you best memory of college gymnastics?

A: My sophomore year when the team made Regionals. We did really well and (Cara Pomeroy) scored a perfect 10 on bars to make nationals. Being at Regionals and competing so well was good for all of us.

Q: How have you improved as a gymnast since your freshman year?

A: I’ve improved a lot; it was rough my freshman year. Being able to deal with pressure little by little and knowing how to stay calm and have more confidence in myself and my gymnastics.

Q: You’re form Minnesota, so what is the most different thing about living in Illinois?

A: There are no bodies of water around here – no lakes. I’m excited to go back (to Minnesota) for dental school since I haven’t been home for such a long time in such a long time.