BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) – For the first time in nearly two years, Vermont high school Spring sports teams were allowed to begin practicing on Monday.
That was exciting and welcome news at schools across the state, including at CVU where three of the school’s spring programs won state championships in 2019.
The boys lacrosse team and girls tennis team were among the champions who didn’t get the opportunity to defend their crowns last year when the 2020 high school spring season was canceled due to the pandemic. With such a long gap since they last played in any real organized fashion, the Redhawks are working off the rust, but they’re hopeful they can regain their championship form when competition rolls back around.
“Yeah so last Summer, I played a little bit, but over the winter and when it got cold, it was really hard for me because COVID was such a novelty and we didn’t know much about it. So I wasn’t able to play much.”, said CVU senior tennis player Ella Kenney. “In the last month or so, I’ve definitely played a lot more and it just feels great to be out.”
“I haven’t done much personally.”, admitted senior lacrosse player Alex Leonard. “It’s been tough getting back into it to be honest. It’s been almost two years now since I played because of COVID, but I think everyone’s really excited to get back out here.”
Roster turnover is something that all high school sports teams have to deal with on a yearly basis. But spring teams this season face the challenge of replacing two groups of seniors, the players that graduated after the 2019 season, and the class that did not get the chance to play last spring when the season was canceled.
“I really think it comes down to senior leadership and guys who were on the team.”, says CVU boys lacrosse senior Shane Gorman. “I think we have 7 or 8 returners (from the 2019 team) and that is really what it comes down to. Yes, we have some underclassmen and some juniors who haven’t played at the varsity level that are gonna have to fill roles, but I think we have the talent. It just just comes down to if we’ll be able to dial in with kids who don’t really have experience at the varsity level before.”
“It’s definitely hard”, says senior girls tennis player Sunny Premsankar, “It’s for sure a growing year and we have plenty of excited people out here to play and we look forward to continuing to play and getting everyone going and having a team again.”
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