Freshmen take on varsity sports

Lizzie Kotlove

More stories from Lizzie Kotlove


Photo courtesy of Sam Mayster

Freshman Evie Avillo takes on two Blair players as she moves down the field with the ball, showing off her great footwork. Avillo’s love for the game started since she got to dress up as a soccer player in a spirit day at school at a very young age.

As the fall sports season comes into full swing, some talented freshmen are getting their first shot at varsity teams–meaning they were selected to play and compete with kids much older than them. Most freshmen and sophomores make junior varsity teams to improve their skills and eventually move up to varsity, but some freshmen show great skill already and are put on varsity for their first season.

Freshman Alejandra Gomez is a varsity cheerleader, and even though it is her first year cheering, she has been a gymnast since she was four. Being a freshman on a team with mostly upperclassmen can be intimidating, but Gomez loves the environment she has been welcomed into.

“It makes me nervous at the games because I am being watched and around all older kids, but it is also fun having older friends that you can depend on,” Gomez said.

The football team is already off to a great start this season, and lone varsity freshman Dylan Bryd is ready to help bring the team to more victories. This is Bryd’s fourth year playing football, and he is very excited to get better and meet new people.

I like how uncommon it is to be a freshman on varsity, and it helps me get a lot more practice on improving, rather than just learning the basics.

— Dylan Byrd

Another freshman on varsity is Charlotte DeLong who has been playing field hockey since fourth grade. Delong is very excited to play with a new team and meet new girls, and is especially excited because her sister plays on the team as well, furthering her connection with the team.

“Overall, the team has been a great experience so far, although it requires a lot of commitment it is very worth it to get to play with my new friends and for WJ,” DeLong said.

Soccer is one of the hardest sports to make, and for a freshman to make the varsity soccer team is a huge accomplishment only rewarded to the players with the greatest potential and skill. Freshman Evie Avillo was selected to play on the girls’ varsity soccer team, and she is extremely happy to be playing with older girls she can look up to. Avillo has been playing soccer since she was three, and has rightfully earned her spot as a strong force on the field.

“I think that being on varsity is higher intensity, but it is worth it as it has been so much fun and my soccer skills have increased greatly already,” Avillo said.