Despite an ACL tear that required surgery this past fall, senior Samantha Craus hasn't let anything get her spirits down during her senior season. She's a fighter, a leader, and a best friend. We asked some of those closest to her what Sam means to them, to the team and what they'll miss most when she graduates.
Just because she’s not going to compete with us doesn’t mean that she doesn’t add something to this team. She’s added something to this team every year and to our national championships and we love her. There’s no one like Sam. "
"I tell her everything. She’s definitely been a rock for me and whenever I’m struggling I go to her. I know that she’ll be one of my best friends for life."
"In the fall she was doing really well and when (the injury) happened, I just started crying because I knew how bad she wanted it and for it to be taken away from someone like her, it’s just not fair. "
Sam has a very positive personality and we’ve had a lot of experiences and memories together. She’s very positive, very bubbly. She’s very family oriented – we consider our team a family – and you can see that with the team as well. She’s always there for everybody and anytime you need her she’ll be there for you. She’s very selfless."
"She’ll do anything for anybody. If you need her at any moment, she’s there for you. She’s been through a lot and she stays positive through everything she does. Just in life, she has a very positive outlook."
"We’ve been through everything together. She’s my rock. It’s going to be tough without her. I go to Sam for everything, I tell her everything - it’s going to be hard."
Sam is an all-around great person. She’s one of my best friends and I can tell her almost anything. She always makes the best out of any situation possible. She’s just an amazing person. We’ve always been the goofy friends. We have inside jokes and are constantly laughing. It’s been like that the entire four years we’ve known each other. She likes to lighten up the mood and she doesn’t ever bring anybody down."
"She has one of the brightest futures. She’s so driven to make a difference in the world. She doesn’t really know what she wants to do right now, but she’s going to find out soon enough and she’s going to go really far."
"She just brings joy into my life. She’s one of my best friends and I don’t really know what I’d do without her. She lifts everybody up. She’s the loudest cheerer in the room. She’s only competed once, but that one time she got to compete, she did it with all her heart. We were all so happy for her because she was able to show what she could do even though she wasn’t able to do it for very long. We all support her so much. "
What isn’t Sam? She’s intelligent, she’s dedicated, she has such drive, she’s hilarious. She’s one of those people who’s well rounded and she’s just a great person. She’s an aspect of our team that no one else could replace. No one could come near it because no matter what’s going on she’s always positive, always cool-headed. She’s definitely one of the best people I know."
"Everyone needs someone to lean on and Sam is that for everyone. Other people have said she’s their rock and she’s my rock. I’ve come to her with so many issues and Sam is always there."
"I’m going to miss her. I can always talk to her and I love talking to her. She’s always entertaining and fun to be around. I’m going to miss her like crazy."
Sam has impacted my life in more ways than you can imagine. She doesn’t always speak her opinion in the gym but she’s definitely a leader. She leads by example and is great to have around. Her personality is contagious and just radiates joy and energy. Any day you see her, she’s always smiling and happy. She magnetizes people to her. Everyone wants to be around her."
"She’s a leader. She’s the backbone that holds us together. She makes everyone feel comfortable and welcome. She gets everyone ready for the meet and does everyone’s hair. She’s amazing. She gives me pep talks and other people pep talks and she’s just an incredible person."
"She’s not a follower. She stands out and doesn’t do what others do. I think that’s something that she’s very proud of."