They’re All In

FAHS Girls’ Soccer Team Approach Covid with Positivity

Girls+Soccer+often+incorporates+scrimmages+and+other+fun+activities+into+their+open+gyms.+%0APhoto+Credit%3A+Robert+Murphy

Girls Soccer often incorporates scrimmages and other fun activities into their open gyms. Photo Credit: Robert Murphy

Girls soccer has been doing a great job preparing for the future. Enacting several opportunities for girls to better themselves is something that the program has been offering since the very beginning of COVID-19. It has shaped not only the team, but each young woman individually throughout the course of a year. It will, without any doubt, bring them success in their nearing season. 

The girls’ soccer participants have taken this pandemic as an opportunity to better themselves. They approach their obstacles with positive attitudes and full steam. They have set up zoom workouts, open gyms, and group workouts to prepare themselves for an altered season. Not only that, but many of the girls’ soccer players are multisport athletes. This has allowed for many of them to experience the struggles and differences in other seasons that they may see in their soccer season.

Sophomore Bella Mckelvey, and Junior Jade Vanwormer enjoy an outdoor practice. Photo Credit: Bella Mckelvey

Their team is privileged to have seen such great leadership through these hard times offered by their captains. Juniors Jayden Hawkins and Katharina Kessler, and senior Madison Miles have provided The Signal with crucial information that allows us to get an understanding of just how hard they, and the rest of their teammates have been working.

“A lot of our players play for various club programs, which have allowed us to get touches in the offseason. Coach Murphy also provided us with many opportunities to try new skills in order to improve. Lastly we have had frequent zoom meetings where we talk about what we can expect for the upcoming season, and we also used to read articles and listen to podcasts that have helped us improve our mental game too,” says Miles of the work their team put in during lockdown.

Their approach to what many have been seen as a struggle is overbearing and advantageous. Quite clearly, the team would not be those things if it weren’t for the amazing coaches that have changed the girls’ soccer program. “Coach Robert Murphy is our head coach, and he has been absolutely amazing. He has pulled the program out of a really bad spot, and has changed it for the better. Through open gyms, contact days, and virtual workouts Coach Murphy has pushed our program to the next level where we can better compete with the other teams in the Badger Conference. Our JV coach is Bailey Johnston, she has been a huge help at all the meetings and open gyms. It’s been nice having a young female coach that all the girls can relate to, and she brings different perspectives and ideas to the table that we haven’t yet been exposed to,” says Miles. Miles expresses for herself and her teammates, her gratitude and thanks for these coaches. The appreciation for leaders like them is neverending, and it is them to thank when all their hard work pays off during their season.

As time carries, so do the hardships that come with the pandemic. What was once a country that went into a lockdown, and did not allow for many schools to be in session, is now one that allows for many things we once referred to as “normal” to be back. This only inspired the girls’ soccer players more. Hawkins speaks on the many events taking place that she and her teammates have been attending.

The girls’ soccer program has gotten the permission to have pre-season open gym practices that can be led by Coach Murphy and Coach Bailey. We took that offer and ran with it! We have seen a great turnout from the ladies and see lots of hard work being put in every weekend! It’s the work you put into the offseason that no one sees that wins you games during the season” says Hawkins. Not only have they been working hard strengthening their skills, muscles, and agility, they strive to strengthen something else that many don’t always appreciate. The girls soccer program has installed a program that idealizes the importance of ACL strengthening and training. At all practices, open gyms, weight lifting sessions, and more, the ACL tear prevention program is run by the captains. It was introduced to them by Emily and Kiersten of Fort HealthCare. The program consists of a wide range of exercises that can be done in the gym, weight room, or even at one’s home. It begins with a cardio warmup, followed by several exercises (some requiring equipment like a resistance band), and is completed with a series of core exercises. 

It is without a doubt the ACL tear prevention program along with the several open gyms and practices taking place are preparing the girls soccer players like never before. Their time and effort displayed in these events will take them far this season, and future season. They are prepared and excited to get back on the field after missing their season last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.