Kelly Amonte Hiller speaks at third annual event to promote women in sports


Source: Northwestern Athletics

Northwestern hosted National Girls and Women in Sports Day on Saturday at Welsh-Ryan Arena. Kelly Amonte Hiller, Northwestern women’s lacrosse coach, spoke at the event.

Cassie Wassink, Reporter

Northwestern lacrosse coach Kelly Amonte Hiller spoke at the National Girls and Women in Sports Day on Saturday about achieving athletic success by accepting differences and improving upon failure.

The event, which took place at Welsh-Ryan Arena, included a series of roundtable discussions between fourth through 12th-grade girls, student athletes, media representatives and coaches. Many of the participants played sports or had interest in sports media or advertising.

Hiller concluded the event with her keynote address.

“As a female athlete, sometimes you break the mold,” she said. “You have to have confidence and be OK with being a little different.”

Growing up, Hiller said she was always aware she approached sports with more intensity than her classmates. She said embracing this distinction allowed her to succeed. Hiller has won nine NCAA Championship titles — seven as coach, two as player — as well as making nine consecutive NCAA semifinal appearances at NU.

Hiller also described the importance of believing in yourself, which she strives to instill in the women’s lacrosse team. The coach said players engage in creative exercises to boost one another’s confidence.

Recognizing failure is also important, she said.

“Our program has been very successful,” Hiller said of the lacrosse team. “But we’ve been defined by how we’ve responded to our setbacks.”

She said the team’s ability to identify areas of weakness and overcome them has led to a greater degree of success.

Betsy Golomski, assistant director of athletic communications at NU, said the event tied into the 28th Annual NGWSD on Feb. 5, a day which strives to recognize past and present contributions of female athletes. The NU event provided girls a chance to learn more about all aspects of sports, including media broadcasting and Big Ten positions.

Attendees included Dionne Miller, a sports reporter for FOX Chicago news and Anna Miller, assistant coach for women’s swimming and diving.

Tori Gallegos, a freshman from Northside College Prep High School, said the opportunity to meet a broadcaster was interesting, as that is a career field she may consider entering.

Students also heard from two current women’s basketball team members at the beginning of the event.

At the end, participants and their families had the opportunity to stay and watch the NU women’s basketball game against Minnesota.

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