Freshmen playing at the next level

By Lauren Parker
out of bounds

Getting shoved into lockers, bullied by seniors and laughed at by everyone. These are the typical stereotypes of freshmen, but some DHS freshmen are breaking down barriers between upper classmen by making varsity sports teams. This year, many sports teams at DHS are relying on their freshmen in order to succeed.

Being new, many freshmen did not expect to make the varsity sports teams, but were happy about about making the team.

“It was a surprise making the team,” freshman lacrosse player Brett Brillhart said.

Freshman Maya Piper was just as surprised as Brillhart when she made the soccer team.

“I didn’t expect to make varsity this year since the team is so good this year,” freshman soccer player Maya Piper said. “I felt accomplished when I made it and I was glad to be able to play with my sister. I was really excited because it’s probably the best year I’ll play for Dow with the talent that we have.”

Making the varsity team did not come easy for these freshmen though, they put in extra effort in order for them to succeed.

“Making varsity was something I always wanted to do” freshman soccer player Murphy Stadelmaier said.

In order to accomplish the goal to make varsity soccer, Stadelmaier worked very hard.

“I conditioned a lot and I played travel in Detroit to get extra training,” Stadelmaier said.

Stadelmaier wasn’t the only one putting in the extra effort to make the varsity sport team. Freshman Anna Gable also worked diligently to make the varsity cheer team.

“I worked out a lot with the team over the summer and over fall I kept learning cheers and chants,” Gable said.

Maya Piper did outside soccer training throughout the off season to improve her chances of making the varsity soccer team.

“I played over the winter and I train year round,” Piper said.

As did Brillhart.

“I practiced a lot over the summer and winter and I went to drop-ins once a week,” Brillhart said.

Despite being a freshman, most of these DHS athletes have been respected and accepted by their upperclassmen teammates.

“The upperclassmen have treated me well, I knew some of them before soccer, but everyone has accepted me and I felt part of the team from the first day,” Stadelmaier said.

Gable agreed that she felt very welcomed to the varsity cheer team.

“The upperclassmen were really open and made us feel part of the team,” she said.

These freshmen athletes, however, do not completely have the libery from hazing and bullying, but for the most part they understand that it is an acceptance to the varsity team.

“The upperclassmen aren’t really mean, but they play the freshmen card a lot,” freshman golfer Ben Morgan said.

Piper agreed with this but understands the treatment she is given.

“It’s a normal freshman thing,” she said. “We have to get water and carry goals, but other than that it’s good and we have a lot of team chemistry.”

This type of treatment towards freshmen is carried on to the lacrosse field as well.

“I get hazed a little, I have to bring water back and forth everyday, but other than that I’ve felt accepted,” Brillhart said.

For the most part, these DHS athletes have learned to take things as jokes, and don’t feel bullied by their teammates.

“I got made fun of for being a freshman but I knew they were just joking,” Gable said. “We became closer as friends and as a family throughout the season, you learn to take things as jokes.”

Although it’s only their first year walking the halls of DHS, these athletes have high expectations of and goals for their future.

“I want to get better and hopefully make it to states all four years” Morgan said.

Additionally to improving individual skills they also want to help their teams improve.

“I want to improve myself and make those around me better to make the team better,” Brillhart said.

Piper agreed.

“Overall I just want to try to be a team leader and improve as a player,” she said.

These athletes also have high hopes for a future long road in playoffs

“This year I want to go to states” Piper said. Brillhart hopes the lacrosse team goes far in playoffs too, “I want to try to go to states,” he said.

College athletics are also on the radar for some of these freshmen on the varsity sport teams in the near future.

“Overall I want to become a better soccer player over the next four years,” Stadelmaier said. “I really want to play in college and I really want to win states.”

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