Schwartz finds road to success goes from Janesville to Lake Mills
The Lakeside Lutheran High School senior standout is one of the top quarter-milers in the state and will likely earn a fourth straight trip to the WIAA Division 2 state track and field meet.
As a four-year member of the Lakeside varsity cross country team, Schwartz ran at state twice, including a Division 2 state team title in 2007.
As impressive as her athletic resume is, Schwartz also seems to be running circles around the competition in the classroom.
Schwartz, who lives in Janesville, will graduate in June from Lakeside as one of three valedictorians in a class of 93. She also was an invited student following her junior year for the National Merit Scholarship.
Schwartz will continue her studies next fall at Wisconsin Lutheran College in Milwaukee, and also hopes to compete in cross country and track.
Lakeside held its awards banquet last week, and teachers were asked to submit profiles of graduating seniors.
Principal James Grasby said Schwartz, the daughter of Jeff and Michelle, got rave reviews.
“Very quiet, but very disciplined,” one teacher wrote. “A model student.”
“No maintenance required,” wrote another. “Expresses her faith well.”
Grasby said the accolades were well-deserved.
“An excellent, faith-oriented student/athlete,” Grasby said. “She exemplifies what our school is all about. Just a great kid.”
Schwartz has run on two 1,600-relay teams at state that finished seventh, one spot away from the podium. After a diligent off-season workout regimen, Schwartz seems to have found an extra gear this season.
At the Watertown Invitational earlier this season, Schwartz ran the 400 in 1:01.14, the sixth-fastest time in the state in Division 2. She also ran a 59.9 split as the anchor on the 1,600 relay team that ran a 4:10.92, which is the second-fastest time in the state this season in Division 2.
Lakeside girls track and field coach James Bauer said Schwartz is primed for a medal-run at state.
“I would like to put Ellen in about seven events. That’s how valuable she is to our team,” Bauer said. “But I can only put her in three.
“She can run the 200, 400 or 800, and has also started running the 300 low hurdles for us.”
Traveling to Lake Mills and back each school day is close to a 60-mile round trip. Schwartz said the daily commute has never been an issue.
“I’ve had a pretty normal high school life,” Schwartz said. “There are about nine or 10 of us that car pool together every day, so my mom only has to drive to Lake Mills about three or four times a month. The drive doesn’t bother me.
“As far as school goes, I’ve just tried to stay focused and put my faith in God.”
The plan seems to be working to perfection.
The Schwartz file
-- Person I admire most: My grandmother (Delphine).
-- Prerace routine: Our team prays and dances.
-- Best sports memory: Winning state as a team in cross country my sophomore year (Division 2—2007).
-- Favorite food: Chinese.
-- Most prized possession: Jewelry box my grandmother gave me.
-- In 10 years, I’ll be: If not working in sports medicine, still going to school. Hopefully, still running.
-- Dream job: Sports medicine physician.
-- If I could have one super power, it would be: To fly.
-- If I could play any other sport, it would be: Downhill skiing.
-- My favorite saying: “Do everything to the best of your ability, and do everything under God.”
-- If I could have dinner with one famous person (dead or alive), it would be: Abraham Lincoln.
-- CD currently getting the most play: A mix with a little bit of everything.