As a freshman, I have only experienced high school through a pandemic. So, the only sport seasons that I have witnessed have been modified due to the pandemic.
With that being said, I and several other freshman girls have been able to play volleyball this year. Although we can’t play the sport exactly like the team has in the past, we are fortunate enough to get the opportunity to play, and would like to share how the season has been so far.
Ninth grader Kiana Coppa gave her opinion on her first volleyball season compared to her experiences playing the sport in past years: “Compared to my experience with recreational and travel sports, high school sports are much more serious. I was also able to meet a lot of really great players as well!”
Just as Ms. Coppa said, high school sports have a different type of competitive environment because of course there is a sense of pride that inspires the team to play hard and win for the school.
Another component, the usual crowd of fans, is not exactly able to be a part of our first season. This year, there are only up to two spectators allowed per athlete, therefore downsizing the crowd by a huge rate.
Ava Bissonette shared, “This season isn’t exactly everything I had hoped for because normally more people can come and watch, and there’s more games. However, I can’t complain since they allowed sports to happen at all so I’m really glad for that.”
Even coming to watch the games in past years, the energy that the crowd brings is something so special, and I know I and the other players are looking forward to when we are able to play with such a hyped up crowd supporting us.
Despite not being able to play with a supportive crowd, all of the athletes on the team have continued to support one another, which is something that we are glad not to miss, especially during such an odd and shortened season.
Danica Anderson even commented that, “The team is really fun and inclusive. We are supportive of each other and everyone is like family.”
Playing a team sport was something new for one of our players, Ryan Paiva, who said, “I think I went in a bit blind as I was new to the sport, but it has been good to learn as a team.”
This season has been super enjoyable for the past month as the team has progressed together, overcoming the difficulty of the pandemic together through our common love for the sport.
Paiva noted, “I think with the pandemic, things can become more stressful but having a sport as an outlet is an opportunity I’m grateful for.”
Adding onto that, freshman Laila Amaral shared, “COVID has made me appreciate even being able to play this year!”
I’d also like to mention some of the modifications that our athletes have either appreciated or disliked.
Ms. Coppa said, “I like the constant hand sanitizing. I honestly think this should be something we keep after the pandemic is over. I don’t really like the six foot rule as it can be hard to celebrate points, but I understand why it is put in place.”
Ava Bissonette shared how the modifications have actually pushed the team to communicate better on the court: “Because of the masks, you have to talk louder so people can hear you, and in volleyball you have to talk loud during the game anyway.”
If anything, having to wear masks has emphasized the need for communication during our games which has helped us win our first two games against Greater New Bedford Vocational High School and Bourne High School.
If you would like to watch any of the Fall II sports games, please feel free to go to the Fairhaven Athletics Website and click on the link to any of our live videos of the games (http://fairhavenhs.ss16.sharpschool.com/athletics___clubs)
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