Sports at Waltham High are a pretty big deal to the community. Almost everyone has been to a high school sports game in their lifetime and they are normally pretty fun. You eat food, cheer on players and talk with other fans. But when a pandemic hits hard, sports kind of take the back seat when it comes to priorities. But there is light at the end of the tunnel and people will be able to play. The Coronavirus put limits on the amount of people that can watch sports games and play in the games. Due to these restrictions, families haven’t been able to see their children play in person and have to watch via T.V. screens.
There have been limits on the amount of people that are allowed to watch sports games at Waltham high school. This is an unfortunate situation because parents and other students love to watch the games on weekends. But, now that is not possible and that has put a damper on the athletes spirts because when they look out into the crowd, there aren’t as many people cheering them on. “Having no audience really dampens the sport. The sound of the cheers and of the crowd is really a major part of the sport” says Zachary Pereira ’23. Hearing the loud cheering of a crowd helps motivate players to do better. There are definitely benefits to having a crowd and not having one but in most athlete’s athletes opinions, they prefer a crowd over no one at all. “Although there is pressure to succeed in front of your fans, it’s better than having nobody cheering at all” says Romey Valme ‘21.
Due to the pandemic, practice schedules have been altered to stop the spread of Covid-19. Since teams aren’t practicing as much together they aren’t able to work as well together this year as they have in previous years. During practices coaches have had to stop to stop what they are doing to make sure that their players have mask breaks which interrupts practice. “We’ve been having virtual meets, and making changes during practices to adhere to masking and social distancing” explainsMeghan Tierney ’21. On top of having to change practice plans, there are fewer practices during the week. Zachary Pereira ‘23 notes that “we practice four times a week as opposed to a usual six, which affects our performance. And having to figure out spacing and wearing masks is just a tedious task on top of that.”
Sports in Waltham high has changed in many ways this year because of the virus, but teams have found ways to make the most of this bad situation. Some teams have gone on outdoor hikes as a type of team bonding exercise. Others have had virtual lip sync battles and things like that. We are all just trying to make the best out of a bad situation and trying to look on the bright side.