Despite cancelled seasons, Wilson athletes continue to practice their skills

Isa Thompson

Roaring jam-packed stadiums, sweaty high-fives, communal water jugs, and team huddles are sadly all things of the past now. Who knows when or if these memories will ever become a reality again. It seemed as though it would be impossible to go back to having teams practicing together again. Since almost every sport consists of players perspiring and breathing heavily around one another, it’s likely that parents wouldn’t want to send their child back to sports for a while. Fortunately though, some teams have figured out ways to safely practice again, bringing athletes back to their games whether on the field or court. Although it’s nowhere near the same as before, athletes get to return to the sports world.

Senior Ethan Slager, the captain for the Wilson boys varsity soccer team, believes that his time during quarantine has actually improved his soccer skills. “I have been able to train more because there is way less to do. My game fitness and awareness is likely lower but my technical skills are much better,” said Slager. It looked like other athletes agreed on the fact that quarantine brought time for improvement in certain aspects of sport skills. “COVID has made it harder to get stronger because a lot of gyms were closed.I think training by myself and watching videos made me a better pitcher overall,” said senior Sam Alswang, an athlete on the Wilson baseball team. 

On the other hand, some athletes who stopped practicing all together for a longer period of time were negatively impacted skill-wise. “When I first came out of quarantine it was really hard to adjust. I hadn’t played in such a long time. I had formed some really bad habits. It took me a solid month to even come close to where I was pre-COVID,” said junior Summer Campbell, a player on the Wilson varsity volleyball and basketball team. Club teams are taking sanitation very seriously and players have been very focused on staying safe. “Before we even step on the court the floors and balls are thoroughly sanitized. We have to get our temperature taken daily,” explained Campbell. As for outdoor sports, teams are being just as cautious, “For practice we have to wear a mask and stay at least six feet apart,” said Alswang.

Evidently, each athlete agreed that nothing comes close to that feeling of being able to practice and celebrate with your teammates, hugging, and not having a mask muffling sounds of excitement. Hopefully the day will come when we can all take part in this again as soon as possible.