Spring Sports: Vaccines are Changing the Game
by Amelia Duncan ‘22 and Liv Cooper ‘22
The sun is out and spring sports are finally back! With no promise of a full season this year, all student athletes are full of excitement to resume their season that got cut short last year. Risks are high with Covid, and so is the anticipation to get back to what is considered normal. This season will bring lots of changes and our community will be challenged to make necessary adjustments. Given the circumstances, the Saints will do whatever it takes to return to their sports!
To allow competition with other schools, our athletes are getting PCR tested twice a week on Tuesdays and Thursdays. All sports are able to participate in a season lasting 8 weeks, with regulations pertaining to their sport. In order to participate in games and practices, a negative result is required. Masks, however, are still required during all practices and games.
On Friday, April 9th, it was announced that each player was allowed two spectators for games, which has increased excitement for the season.“Even just having people there to cheer when you're up to bat makes a big difference”, says Senior softball player Caroline Grace Butler.
Considering not all schools test as frequently, competition is limited. This spring season will not have state school competition and even limited ISL/IAC teams playing. Despite the limitations, Junior baseball player, Jimmy Young, says, “One team I'm really looking forward to playing is Georgetown Prep because they've always gotten the better of our team, year in and year out, so knocking them off would be a really big deal and a major victory for the team.”
Given a whole team could be shut down if a player tests positive, Jimmy Young talks about safety precautions at practice, “I've definitely focused on spacing a lot more. I bring hand sanitizer everywhere I go. Of course, I bring a mask and a back up too, definitely something you need to focus on more now than ever.” The vaccine has also become available to our students' age groups, and appeals to athletes as they wish to return to a normal season. Though athletes see it as a way to return to normalcy, Mr. Dodds, varsity lacrosse coach, emphasizes, “In terms of prioritizing, there are some things more important than games, like getting the vaccine.”
Junior tennis player, Taner Prestholdt is looking excited about this season but most importantly, “being able to share the bus rides back with my team after a win!” There are lots of elements of this season that will bring normalcy back to the community. “I'm excited to see our kids play, they've been waiting for a long time and they're all great, hard-working kids, that's what the fun is all for us as coaches”, says Coach Dodds.