Sports Affecting Seniors

Deztine Carter, Spartan Life Editor, Staff Writer

COVID-19 has put a damper on a lot of things, but not on Doherty. We’ve managed to participate in sports during this crazy roller coaster. 

Basketball went through many obstacles. Although their “season was cut in half” (DHS senior, Tyler Mahle) due to COVID, they were still able to practice and compete! They have certain protocols for practicing. Brody Gish turned this notion into a positive outcome. He said, “(…) I feel the mask restriction is not a bad thing. It made me get into better shape.” During their games, masks also must be worn. Senior Schafer Reichart expressed , “(…) It did suck at first, but we’re all used to it now so we think of it as an advantage for our team.” In a sense, Serenity Burnett-Perry agrees, “(…) it gets hard to breathe sometimes but we have to do what we have to do to have a safe season and year” she explained.

Photo courtesy of Tyler Mahle.

One of the most hands-on sports also took place in the Doherty community…wrestling. Practicing with a struggle has become the new norm. As Zion Neville explained, “We must wear masks during warmups i.e. jogging, stretching. I am still getting used to it since I am so used to being able to run around without a mask and being able to speak clearly without yelling.” Matches are just as restricted. As Cymantha Day explains, “(…) we have to wear our masks with our head gear to go check in and then we can take our masks off to wrestle.” 

During soccer, Madeline Ford describes how, “(…) whenever we are with the team we must wear masks. I think it’s the best way to keep everyone safe but when we’re doing intense workouts I’m not a fan of wearing a mask.” Fortunately, seniors understand and agree with the safety precautions taking place for sports, even if it means their own discomfort. Unfortunately, many people missed their opportunity to be seen by athletic college recruiters. Junior year is a big year for recruitments for scholarships. Makayla Stone explains how, “Last year I was supposed to play soccer, but we never got to.” This can be rough on students depending on athletic scholarships for a ride into college. 

Madeline Ford (#15 on top photo) and Makayla Stone (Far left on bottom photo) killing it in soccer! (Photo courtesy of Madeline Ford and Makayla Stone)

Swim and Dive had to go through some hard times as well. Their season was, “postponed from the middle of October to the middle of January” Kate Troutman explains. Practices are just as strict. As Matthew Kolarik told, “(…) there is a mask mandate for when you are not in the water, so up until you get in the water.” Sana Hamad explains how, “Inside of the pool, we can take our masks off. We have little bags at the end of lanes, so when we get out we can just put it back on.” Although this makes it COVID-safe, putting a mask on right after swimming makes it harder to breathe. As Emma Roach describes, “My mask was soaked by the end!” This is very unfortunate. Having to breathe in all of that chlorine right after an energy-consuming, tiring swim must be rough. Of course, there are restrictions in terms of capacity at their meets. Abigail Krueger gives the run down of this. She said, “During meets we are restricted to only allowing 50 people on the deck, and we must cheer everybody on from six feet away from each other.” This makes it hard for loved ones to see their athletes compete. Fortunately, they had live recording to watch outside of the pool.

Diving into victory, Abigail Krueger enters her meet. (Photo courtesy of Abigail Krueger)

Tennis does not have much information on the rules and regulations. As Keenan Daly told, “(…) our season was shortened though.” For volleyball, Morgan Hammarmeister expressed her utmost gratitude. She explained, “Volleyball was supposed to be in August and got pushed back to March. I’m just happy I still get to play knowing the circumstances.” We have been very lucky to be given the opportunity of in-person learning and sports. 

Considering their seasons have not yet begun, golf does not have much information. Kathryn Kachel gave out the information that she knows. She said, “(…) they might require us to wear masks for warming up, practices, and stuff like that.” As expected, but it may be slightly easier since they perform outside for the most part.

The softball season went strong!  Although they were, “cut 9 games” said Jasmine Costa. She also expressed her opinion on practice and described how their games work. For practices, they could not, “(…) we had to wear masks to practice and could not participate unless we went through temperature checks and COVID-19 screening, but after we were cleared, we could practice. However we had to stay distanced the whole time and put the mask back on if we were too close  to one another. It was a little inconvenient because players were not allowed to set up the field until we were checked in and could not start practice until the exact time. The restrictions were not fun but could have been a lot worse” Jasmine told. She was exactly right, Doherty staff and students have learned to adapt to our new circumstances. We are very good at that!

Batted up at base, Jasmine Costa gets ready to strike a home run! (Photo courtesy of Jasmine Costa)

Cross country had it slightly less uncomfortable. As Daniel Padilla explained that during meets, “(..) we had to wear a mask. Although as soon as we start running we could take them off.” This must make it easier on the athletes. Katherine Fromuth believes that the mask restriction“(…) was reasonable and [I] am very grateful for the fact that no one had to wear a mask while running.” However, meets were very undetermined in terms of who could and could not attend. As Kelli Martin told, “Sometimes parents were allowed to come, sometimes no one but the coaches and us were allowed. Depended on the venue.” This must have made it hard on the parents of the athletes. 

Kelli Martin (In the middle of top left photo), Katherine Fromuth (Far right of bottom left photo), and Daniel Padilla (Far right #1665 of photo on the right) (Photo courtesy of Kelli Martin, Katherine Fromuth, and Daniel Padilla)

Our athletes have pushed past this through thick and thin! Mask restrictions have not brought our Spartans down no matter what obstacles have met us. Use this as a lesson to proceed even when everything around you seems to be falling apart. Where there is a will, there is a way.