Three-sport athletes handle the grit and grind of school and sports

Donovan Wilson, Sports Editor

Sports are physically and mentally demanding. You have to practice your time management, make sacrifices and insure that people are around to help you with your troubles. But what if you don’t play just one sport, or two? Some student athletes play three sports, and here is how they handle all the pressure and keep their schedule in order.

High school sports are divided into the seasons of the school year. This includes fall, winter, and spring seasons, all of which host specific sports. Many athletes at Loy Norrix typically play one or two sports throughout the year, but some still push themselves even further to play sports all year round. 

Junior Reaghan Babrick is one of those three-sport athletes. Babrick is on the cross-country, lacrosse and track and field teams. Babrick has been playing lacrosse since she was little and has been running cross-country and track since her sophomore year of high school. 

“I’m a very busy person. I’m in three clubs, I do three sports as well as having a job and having a social life, so I’m constantly going place to place,” Babrick said.

Being able to participate in three sports can be very challenging and time-consuming, but that doesn’t stop her from doing things outside of these sports. 

“I work at Hungry Howies that’s about 5 minutes from my house, so I work there because it’s close by and I work there 24 hours a week, so as much as possible. I work Saturday and Sunday and a couple shifts after school. On Tuesdays I have Young Democrats Club, Wednesday is Rock Climbing, Thursday is Green School, and Lacrosse conditioning is 7-8:30 so I try to go to those, but I prioritize my job since conditioning is optional,” Babrick said. 

There is no time to rest for student athletes. When one sport is finished these athletes have almost no time to prepare mentally and physically for the grind of another sport. 

“Probably just staying in the weight room is the best thing, so I can build my strength. Just staying in the physical shape makes the transition easier,” said junior Michael Martin. 

Martin plays tennis, basketball and baseball and plans to return to football next year. Working out in the weight room is very important for building physical strength, but athletes must also be strong mentally. 

“I take my time and take a day off or two days off from practice and get something like a sandwich or something to eat and refuel and take a nap instead. I practice a lot of self-care, so I always make sure to put myself first,” Babrick said. 

Mental health has always been an issue for athletes. According to research from Ohio University, athletes have a higher risk of anxiety, depression, stress, suicidal thoughts, physical strain and injuries than an average high school student. The hard work of student athletes has not gone unnoticed by coaches either.

Mikey (Michael Martin) is one of the hardest working and respectful young men that I have had the pleasure of coaching”

— Baseball Head Coach Zachary Rickli

“You never have to ask him twice to do something. He is a ‘yes sir’ kind of kid and, as a coach, you love that. I have seen Mikey face adversity and struggles by staying after practice and getting extra work in. His work ethic is contagious and seems to rub off on some of his teammates. There are times when kids who you wouldn’t think would ever stay after practice to get extra work in but when Mikey does. His teammates seem to follow his lead.” 

Student athletes always have a lot on their plate, with the winter season halfway finished some three-sport athletes will soon be preparing for the spring season.