Winter Sports Review

Winter season has arrived upon the Hilltop, which means that winter sports have kicked off. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, winter sports have had to adapt to the guidelines in place, keeping teams from competing against other schools. That said, Hackley’s athletes continue to practice and prepare for the winter season while following social distancing protocols.
One sport that has not been affected that much by the new COVID-19 guidelines is fencing. The fencing team has had to make the adjustment of wearing masks under their shields at all times, but other than that due to the non-contact nature of the sport, practice has been relatively unchanged.
Another sport that has not been affected drastically is indoor track. Like fencing, mask wearing is one of the largest changes that the runners have faced, leaving them with a relatively similar practicing format.
Due to restrictions surrounding proper social distancing, the squash team has had to use both the Johnson Center and old Zetkov squash courts in order for everyone to be able to practice.
“We have to go to Zetkov which is different and we also don’t have Coach Paterno to help us this season… We will play against each other a little but I don’t think it’s going to be as competitive,” junior Greg Reich said.
Boys and girls basketball has also been drastically affected by the current COVID protocols; “COVID has impacted practice because we are not allowed to play full court scrimmages but our plan is to stay optimistic and improve any way we can,” junior Jason Berger said.
Swimming has had some of the most interesting changes to their usual season. There are only 2 to 3 people now allowed per lane in the pool, with the swimmers having to start on opposite ends of the pool. While mask wearing isn’t possible while swimming, the athletes are required to keep their masks in tupperware containers outside of the pool, so that when they exit the pool they can put their masks back on.
When asked about potential competition between schools, junior Brooke Lopez-Ryan said, “They are talking about doing virtual swim meets where we would compare our times to times of swimmers from a different school and rank swimmers based off of those.” The swim team has definitely had to adapt to the new guidelines put in place, but they seem to be coming up with unique solutions in order to still have a successful and safe season.
The sport that likely has been affected by the pandemic the most is wrestling. Wrestling by nature is the most contact sport offered in the winter at Hackley, making it extremely difficult for the wrestlers to practice as they are unable to compete against each other. This has led them to have to complete cardio workouts instead of the usual practices.
“We can’t have any contact so we have only been doing workouts. No drills or live wrestling,” senior Ty Wyman said.
The ongoing pandemic has affected Hackley’s winter sports by preventing competitions and games with other schools and changing how practice is held for the majority of sports. That said, Hackley has not given up and continues to practice and prepare in a safe environment.