Senior athletes, just like freshmen, had to start somewhere-- but how did they feel then versus now? Most will tell you how nervous and scared they were, but now they have more confidence in themselves.
Senior Emily Scheer, 3rd baseman for the New Haven softball team, said, “I have had the opportunity to play and learn a position I have never played before-- third base-- and I loved playing it. I’ve grown and learned a lot in the last 4 years.”
This seemed to be a common sentiment among the athletes I talked to. Natalie Hoerstkamp, a senior cross-country runner, let her words sum up her experience: “I was more worried than I was nervous. I worried about every little thing! Now… now I just focus on running. I know now that when I am on that course, I’m not going to die.”
Senior Emma Engelbrecht, middle blocker for the NH volleyball team, also expressed her thoughts and feelings with, “I’m not as nervous or scared now. Yes, I have more responsibility, but I don’t sweat the small stuff. I shake it off and do better the next time.”
Sarah McKernan, a senior and starting pitcher for the softball team said, “Sports have definitely changed me. Freshman year, I was for sure nervous to play. So much pressure was on me to be a freshman pitching on varsity. Now I love being a pitcher. I love the thrill and how I’m involved in every minute of the game. I don’t feel stressed or nervous, I feel relaxed when I’m on the mound and I block everybody else out. It’s just me playing the game I love.”
Senior volleyball player Kate Ruediger stated, “I was definitely more nervous as a freshman and sophomore than I am now. Now I know the game better and have some experience.”
Lauren Gerlemann, a senior on the volleyball team, said, “Freshman year was overwhelming trying to get into the swing of high school sports, but as the years went on, things weren’t that big of a deal anymore. You just become more relaxed and more comfortable as an athlete.”
Senior athletes, whether they play softball, volleyball, or cross country, all faced difficulties their freshman year. However, they stuck with it and have gained more confidence.