In only a few weeks, Staples students will be lugging their sports equipment to school and chugging their electrolyte infused drinks for spring tryouts.
By now, upperclassmen know the drill. Some varsity sports don’t even require juniors and seniors to try out if they’ve been on the team in past years. However, freshmen are still anxiously waiting to find out if they’ll make the cut as a Staples spring athlete.
Tess Rubin ’17, hoping to make the tennis team, is one of many freshmen who is excited for the tryout process to be overwith. “What I’m most nervous for during tryouts is playing my best outside,” Rubin explained how difficult it is to play tennis when it is cold and windy. With cold hands and wind blowing on her, Rubin says she will have a more difficult time grasping the racquet and controlling the ball that’s being carried by the wind, so she’s hoping for warm and sunny weather.
“Trying out for tennis as a freshmen was pretty intimidating,” Xenia Bradley ’15, a varsity tennis player, recalls. “The format for tryouts was only two games, so it was hard to show your best in just those two games. But, I would advise freshmen to not worry so much. Just play your best in the games you do play and have fun with the tryout process.”
Many Staples athletes have been preparing year round for these tryouts.
Lucas Jackson ’15 said that the lacrosse team has been practicing together since the beginning of the school year.
Three days every week the team has been lifting in the Staples weight room where Coach Paul McNulty ran a mandatory offseason training session. Then, on Sunday nights, there was also an optional clinic in the Sono Field House where the majority of the team participated in an indoor league.
During the months preparing for the season, Jackson said it was important for freshmen to learn how to play with the upperclassmen because that’s the level they should aim to play at.
“Get as much work in with your stick as you can. You’re only as good as your [non dominant] hand,” Jackson reminded freshmen.
Olivia Troy ’17, also took advantage of the many opportunities available to students during the winter to keep in shape for the spring season. Troy played on Coach Ed Hydic’s basketball team at Staples along with a few other lacrosse players.
Meanwhile, Bradley branched out from the Staples facilities and improved her tennis skills with several teammates at an indoor clinic in Trumbull and worked out at LA Fitness on the days she did not have tennis.
Despite Troy’s efforts to train during the winter months on the basketball team, she still fears she won’t be prepared enough for lacrosse tryouts.
Jamie Tanzer ’15, a track runner, reminds freshmen that if they do not make the team they tryout for there is another option.
“Track and field is the only spring sport at Staples that doesn’t require any tryout,” said Tanzer. “Therefore, if a freshman is cut from their first choice team, they are still welcome to run track.” With tryouts starting on March 24th for most teams, student athletes need to start getting in the tryout mindset and pray for good weather.
Tanzer wishes freshmen the best of luck on their tryouts and reminds athletes to stay hydrated in between tryout sessions.