Sports have returned to Barlow


Natalie Prince

Softball team practicing while social distancing and wearing masks.

Natalie Prince, Staff Writer

Many student-athlete’s hearts were broken when COVID-19 decided to come along and not let us play sports. Fortunately, things are looking up and sports have started up again this year. The process of signing up for sports is a little funky, but students had to fill out a Google form saying what sport they wanted to participate in. If you want to participate in multiple sports you aren’t allowed to do more than one of them at once. That means for two weeks a student will practice with one sports team and then the next two weeks they could sign up for a different sport. If a student decides to only do one sport then they would just continue to go to that same sports practices. 

It sounds complicated, but many student-athletes are just happy to be able to practice again. Even with having to wear masks, it is nice to be with friends again and be active. Senior, Chloe Hilsenteger, is playing softball this year as she has been all her years of high school. She explains how softball practices have been going saying, “At first we had like 20 girls show up to the practices and then one of the practices we only had like 7 or 8 girls so it has kind of fluctuated in terms of how many people are showing up.” I asked her if it has been difficult having to wear masks while working out and she said,

“It has been kinda hard to wear masks especially when we were running a lot at practices, but our coach is good about giving us breaks because he understands it’s hard.” I also asked her if she is enjoying the practices and she answered saying, “Overall it has been pretty fun and it is nice to be able to get back to playing sports we missed our last season and it’s nice that we can do it this year especially for seniors.”

Junior, Josiah Collmer, is also participating in a sport this year and hopes to participate in other sports as well. Collmer talked to me about cross country saying, We do some things as a large group with 6 ft distancing, but during the workouts, we naturally split into groups based on speed, so for the majority of the time we are in small groups staying six feet apart.” He continued saying, “It is extremely hard to run with a mask on in any sport and I think distance running is at the top of the list. Continuously running without breaks, combined with fast workouts keeps you sucking in air the entire time, and a mask impedes that.” Collmer expressed that although there are new norms like wearing masks and staying apart, he really enjoys being around his friends and getting to workout. 

Senior, Olivia Brown, said similar things about cross country explaining, We naturally broke into small groups and completed our workout with people around our pace. I was used to running in a mask from other workouts I have done, but at times it can be challenging.” She also stated that there were about 20 people at practices most of the time which is a pretty good turnout. 

Overall, it seems like student-athletes are excited about being able to get active again even though it can be tough wearing masks and staying 6 feet apart it is still great to slowly get back to normal.