Lyles earns All-Academic honor

Published 10:45 pm Friday, July 26, 2019

Former Team WAR standout Kara Lyles was recognized on the U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Association All-Academic team.

After wrapping up a solid junior campaign for Virginia Commonwealth University, Lyles has been able to achieve accolades both as a student and an athlete. With a strong year academically, she was recognized among other college academic standouts by the sports association.

Lyles is a nursing major, which has a rigorous workload, so to be able to reach goals on the track and in the classroom was very satisfying to Lyles.

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“I had to make a lot of sacrifices, and balancing a heavy courseload with track and exceling in both is rewarding,” Lyles said. “There were many times I had to practice with my team after hours because my class schedule didn’t fit. Having to go to bed early and miss out on things because I had clinical was rough. Even though I sacrificed a lot, it made each accomplishment and win a bit more sweeter.”

On the track, Lyles had a strong indoor season. She competed in the 500, 4×400 and the long jump. At the conference championship indoor meet, she placed third in the 500 and second in the long jump, helping the team three-peat as Atlantic-10 Conference champions. Lyles started off strong during the outdoor season but suffered in an injury two weeks into the season that kept her out for a while. However, she returned with one meet left before the outdoor conference championships. She went on to take second in the 400 hurdles and third in the long jump. She qualified for the east regionals meet for a shot at nationals but didn’t qualify.

“Overall, it wasn’t the best season, but I’m proud I was able to accomplish what I did with all the sacrifices that I made.”

Lyles originally signed to run track at South Carolina and was there before transferring to VCU. She has felt good about her transition. She had to get used to different training, among other things; however, she is happy with her decision to transfer to VCU. She was an All-Academic team honoree at South Carolina as well.

“The team and coaches made me feel very welcomed,” she said. “I really enjoy VCU and wish I would have gotten here sooner, but I believe everything happens for a reason.”

At Nansemond River High School, she helped Team WAR win multiple team titles while winning state titles of her own in her individual events. She is also a national champion with Team WAR.