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The Tangerine

The Student News Site of Utica University

The Tangerine

The Student News Site of Utica University

The Tangerine

With sports season cancelled, student-athletes find creative ways to stay active

Design by Alyssa McKenna

The world of sports has come to a halt due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as sports at all levels have been either suspended or cancelled. Utica College Athletics have been affected by all of this as well. All spring sports have been cancelled, and the Athletic Center is currently closed with no current date of the reopening.

This has left student-athletes with no other choice but to continue with their workouts from home, which for some of them, means getting creative.  

“During this time at home, I am working out and getting workouts from our trainer,” said Lauren Wolff, junior women’s lacrosse player. “He is holding workout sessions on Zoom for his student athletes as if we were with him in the dome working out during the season.” 

Wolff said she is trying to navigate this unexpected situation she has been put in since her season was cancelled. She said she is working on adjusting to her new schedule and trying to stay “in season” ready.

Wolff said she keeps playing lacrosse during times of self-isolation to go along with her routine fitness sessions online. 

“I am also able to go outside and keep my stick in my hand as well,” she said. “I have always been an active person, especially through sports, so I am making sure to keep up my routine to try and normalize these difficult times.”

Wolff said she knows that many other student-athletes are in position and advise them to try to keep busy.

“I believe it is important to stay as consistent as you can with your regular routine to maintain some sense of normalcy,” she said. “It can already be difficult enough to move to online learning and for most, in their own home. It is important to reflect on what you did have this season and have motivation for the next time you can be out on the field with your teammates.’’ 

Wolff said she thinks that there is a lot of value in continuing to talk to your teammates and coaches.

“I have stayed in touch with my coaches as well as my teammates,” she said. “We are all in this together and we understand each other the best during this time. My coach has reached out to make sure I am adjusting well to the changes as best I can, and I know they are there if I were to need anything.  My teammates are all supportive and we are constantly checking up on one another.” 

Senior baseball player Sean Morris is now missing out on his senior season, which is something he never saw coming, he said.

“When I first found out the season was cancelled, I was disappointed more than anything,” he said. “Seeing our potential made me ecstatic for the season to start. I am fortunate enough to be eligible for another year of baseball regardless, but I felt terrible for the seniors on the team.” 

Now that Morris will not be able to train the way he traditionally would, he said he is making sure he is staying active.

“At home, I have weights in our garage that help me keep up with most of my workouts,” he said.  “Living on a farm, there is also a lot I can do around the house that keeps me in shape. I have to work outside the house most days and that requires a lot of heavy lifting that keeps my strength up. Going for runs on my street also keeps me sufficiently conditioned.”

Morris also thinks that you should keep your mind active as well.

“One thing I have started to do since campus closed is watching videos produced by baseball experts that help keep my mental game sharp,” Morris said. “Not only does it keep me thinking about the mental game, but watching mechanical instruction on major league players helps me discover things that I could be working on to improve my own mechanics.”

Staying in contact is key for Morris during this stressful time.

“Senior Matt Leviton took initiative and gathered everyone’s phone number to get them into the GroupMe chat,” he said.  “Ever since the chat came to fruition, we have become noticeably closer, and smaller cliques within the team turned into one clique.”

Women’s lacrosse head coach Kristin St. Hilaire said she was just as disappointed as the players were about the news of the season being cancelled.

“I, along with everyone involved with our program, was and is completely devastated upon receiving the news that our season was cancelled,” St. Hilaire said. “I understand that these were important decisions to make on behalf of the safety of our nation, and specifically our student-athletes. However, it is still so heartbreaking for our players, particularly our seniors that have worked so hard to get themselves and our program to where it is today.”

St. Hilaire takes pride in the season that the team had before all of this happened. The team was 4-0 before the changes, and St. Hilaire said she reminds herself of this to keep optimism going forward. She said she knows that her players have these moments of sadness as well and she wants them to know that nothing they did was in vain, especially the seniors.

“I want them to know that all of their hard work will not go to waste,” St. Hilaire said. “The efforts they have put in will have a lasting impact on our program for years to come.” 

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