By Julia Sparco
Elm Staff Writer
Practice opportunities have been available for Washington College student-athletes even though the College had chosen to go remote for the fall semester.
To prevent the spread of COVID-19, practicing WC athletic teams have had small group practices, where temperatures are taken beforehand, and masks are required unless in gameplay.
WC student-athletes have also been filling out a symptom tracking app for COVID-19, known as the Emocha App, every day.
The men’s and women’s lacrosse teams have been practicing to prepare for a potential spring season.
Only players residing in Chestertown have been approved to practice, but both the men’s and women’s luckily have most of their players in Chestertown.
Coaches of both teams have also been sending workouts and stick work to practice to players that have not been in Chestertown this past semester. These workouts are also being sent out as most players have gone home for the holidays.
“We had great fall practices for everyone who was able to be in Chestertown this fall,” senior co-captain of the WC men’s lacrosse team Keen Griffin said. “Now that everyone is home, everyone is working hard and getting ready for our season whenever it starts.”
Lacrosse does not require many people to practice, so it was extremely easy for the teams to continue to work on themselves throughout the remote semester.
Both teams focused especially on stick work, footwork, shooting, and passing, because it meant less close contact between players and coaches.
“Lacrosse practices were great this year, with the limited amount of numbers we had due to COVID-19, we made the best of it,” senior co-captain of the WC men’s lacrosse team Burke McFillin said. “We did small group work based on position and worked on a lot of fundamentals.”
“We really hammered home the fundamentals in these past few weeks,” said junior WC men’s lacrosse player Ewan Temple. “With low numbers, both player and coaching, there was only so much we could do before things got too repetitive.”
WC lacrosse student-athletes have also reported that these unprecedented times have actually made them grow closer, due to requirements of coaches to strictly spend time with their teammates.
“It’s been a lot of fun building camaraderie with the group of guys in town,” said junior WC men’s lacrosse player Ryan Leahy.
All WC student-athletes in Chestertown have been expected to only come into close contact with their own teammates to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
The only problem that has sprung up throughout these practice restrictions is the loss of communication and relationships with every person on the team. Underclassmen WC student-athletes have been especially hit hard with this.
“All things aside, safety does come first, but the practice restrictions leaves the sophomores and freshmen a little out of touch,” said sophomore WC women’s lacrosse player Sydney Wingate. “A lot of student-athletes, myself included, are looking for ways to get back into town as soon as possible to start practicing again with the team.”
“I feel for the guys who weren’t able to be here with us, but we are ready to welcome them back with open arms and keep moving in the right direction when we get the chance,” said Temple.
The National Collegiate Athletic Association and the Centennial Conference have made no definite decisions on what collegiate athletics will look like for the coming spring semester.
Both the men’s and women’s WC lacrosse teams plan to continue preparing like they have a full season in the spring.
Featured Photo caption: Washington College’s Kibler Field, where men’s and women’s lacrosse teams practice. Photo by Marah Vain Callahan.