All-around athlete Coe leads by example with Mercy team

Al Willman

Novi — If you ask Farmington Hills Mercy’s athletic program about Katie Coe, you’ll find out pretty quickly that there isn’t much the senior can’t do.

That much was evident on Tuesday at the Catholic League A-B track finals at Detroit Catholic Central.

Coe, who is known for being a star on the school’s basketball team, has also dabbled in volleyball, soccer and this year, track.

She was on the fourth-place 4x200 meter relay team and participated in three individual events. Coe was a finalist in the shot put, finishing seventh with a 30-foot, 2.25-inch throw, and took ninth in both the high jump (4-foot, 8-inches) and discus (76-feet, 5-inches).

“I’m excited about that,” Coe said of the relay, which finished in 1 minute, 57.85 seconds. “I didn’t see that coming. The goal was not to get last, so I’m pretty excited about that.”

Mercy coach Gary Servais said Coe was instantly a leader on the team, despite being in her first year.

“She ran everything I asked her to,” he said. “Being there every day, working hard, encouraging her teammates to follow her lead.”

Coe said a lot of her success on the track team can be attributed to Mercy’s basketball coach, Gary Morris.

“It’s a bit different from basketball,” she said.

“Learning my work ethic from Coach Morris and everything, that carries over to track and all my sports. So that really helped.

“Also for high jump, I just started it, but the last three steps are like a layup for me, so every time I was thinking high jump, I (said), ‘Okay, right-handed layup and go.’ Basketball really helped me with that.”

f the four sports she’s played, Coe has a clear favorite: basketball.

“That’s my true sport,” she said. “I really like track. I’m kind of disappointed I didn’t do it sooner.”

Coe will be attending the University of Tennessee in the fall. She’s undecided on a major, but said she’d like to pursue a career related to business. As for Coe’s athletic career, that will be done — at least competitively — after this year.

“I’m not planning on playing sports there,” she said. “It’d be cool if I could play on some team, but that’s not going to happen. It’s a (Division) I school. It’d be a reach.”

Junior hurdler Elena Ervin, who is also in her first year on the track team after three years with Mercy’s hockey team, said Coe’s work ethic is contagious.

“It’s really inspirational to see someone walk on to the track and do running and shot and disc and high jump, too, and be good at all of them,” Ervin said. “It really makes you want to work harder and be able to do things like that, too.

“If you want something, just go for it. You can do it, even in a year.”