For all those involved in sports at CBA, we are being tested during this time of hardship. Especially for the seniors.
After spending countless hours of training and conditioning, to have the last season of our high school athletic career stripped from us, it is a feeling like no other. We all feel intense emotions of anger and helplessness. For most of us, this feeling of unfairness is unparalleled to anything else we have experienced in life so far.
For the crew team, after racing on the water in the fall, we head indoors into the sprint barn to row for countless meters. With the addition of a new system that measures the amount of extra working out we do, everyone on the team has been supplementing our already rigorous training regiment with more hard work. Everyday after school, we train hard with the excitement that at the end of the winter, we will be better rowers from where we started. We know that the effort we put into our winter season will be rewarded when the spring racing season arrives and we can apply our new fitness and strength.
Although this reflection isn’t about me, as the smallest rower on the team, I struggled every single day on the rowing machine. Being the captain of the team and being one of the bottom ergs is something that isn’t normally put together. But, with the help of my fellow seniors and the rest of the team, they pushed me to work as hard as I could to end my final winter season on a high note.
Then came our much anticipated spring season. After having some of the biggest numbers thrown down by a super talented junior class, we were ready to dominate the spring. We were eager to prove to the rowing world that we were a force to be reckoned with.
We set up our boats and equipment as early as the end of February and began water training as soon as March started. We wet launch, which means that we don’t have a dock, so we have to walk our boats into the water. With the water temperature being in the low 40s, being cold at practice was an understatement. However, we were willing to put it all on the line because we love racing and winning.
But now, all of this hard work we put in almost seems like a futile effort. With all of our regattas being cancelled, us seniors feel as if the sport has abandoned us. The sweat and passion of these four years of intense labor seem to have been for nothing.
However, what differentiates a Colt and any other high school athlete is how hard a Colt is willing to work and how resilient they are. In times of adversity, we push through and get the job done. A CBA oarsman does not complain when they miss a PR. They don’t complain when every muscle in their body aches or their hands are torn apart with blisters. Instead, they encourage the fellow teammate to drive that extra split at the end of a grueling workout. They struggle together and fail together, but always pick each other up and succeed together.
We are not so easily broken. The strong will of all members of the crew team persevere through this time of loneliness. Through self-motivation and help from teammates, all rowers are held accountable to maintain their fitness, and the standard is to get faster. Not just to stay where we once were, but to strive for improvement. Doing this alone is tough — especially in a team sport where you rely on the boys in your boat to give it everything they have — but we can do this.
As for us seniors, we would all like to thank our coaches: Coach Scott, Coach Sparta, Coach Ford, Coach Lehman, Coach Joe and Coach Megan for helping us grow not only as athletes, but as men of character. The work ethic and camaraderie instilled in each one of us will remain with us forever. We cannot express our gratitude enough.
Thank you to all parents. This would not have been possible without you. You have driven us countless hours to practice and races, grilled up amazing burgers at our food tent, and have been the rock we needed when we struggled. Thank you.
From the class of 2020 to the rest of the team, this is not a request; this is a demand: Keep up the hard work and get the job done next year. You can do it.