Nov. 27, 2005
With one year at Florida State under her belt, sophomore forward Christie Lautsch is not only a year older, but a year wiser.
“Basketball-wise, I feel a year wiser because now I know what to do and how to get it done,” Lautsch said. “I know the rewards that come out of it when you get it done. As a freshman, I was thinking I’m here to play ball and that’s it, my way. But now, I realize it’s all a system and I know what the coaches want and how it all fits together. Life-wise, I feel a year wiser. I felt myself grow maturity-wise in general, with my friends and with all the relationships that I have. I feel myself taking more responsibility and being a better person.”
While Lautsch experienced a great deal of growth and change over the past year, she helped FSU to a 24-8 record and a second round appearance in the NCAA Tournament in the process. A member of the 2004-05 ACC Academic Honor Roll, Lautsch not only took care of business in the classroom last year but on the court as well. She played in 28 games and scored in 19 of them, including a career-high 16 points in FSU’s win over Eastern Kentucky. She recorded a career-high seven rebounds in the NCAA Tournament win over Richmond.
“My most memorable moment last year was when we went to the NCAA Tournament and got to play against Richmond and made it to the second round to play UConn,” Lautsch said. “Even though we did lose, it was still a good moment for me because it got my feet wet and I know I want to go back to that.”
Adjusting to college life, and all that comes with it, wasn’t easy for Lautsch, but she learned pretty quickly how to become a successful student-athlete.
“The hardest part about college would have to be learning to balance my time, especially at Florida State because there is a lot to do,” Lautsch said. “Basketball and school takes up all of your day and then you try to have a social life. But I think if you use your resources wisely, you can get anything done. We have great facilities here which give us every opportunity to become the best athletes possible. Our academic advisors are always here to help us when it comes to school and we have tutors if we need them.”
Lautsch also learned last year how to go on with life after she lost her mother the previous May, following a seven-year battle with breast cancer.
“Last year was really special in more than one way,” she said. “It was special because it was my first year playing without my mom and without having her by my side. I know she was with me spiritually but she wasn’t here physically. It was also special because it was a new experience for me going to the next level and it was different than high school basketball. It was a good change for me and special in many ways.”
While Lautsch has already learned a lot, and will continue to learn, from her college experience, perhaps it’s what she learned from her mother that will be the basis for all she will accomplish.
“In a nutshell, my mom taught me to never give up, to keep trying and to always believe and that’s how I have tried to live my life,” Lautsch said.