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The Parker Weekly

The student news site of Francis W. Parker School

The Parker Weekly

The student news site of Francis W. Parker School

The Parker Weekly

Captains Giving Counsel

Fall sports captains share experiences and advice for student athletes
Photo credit: The Parker Weekly

“Sometimes it’s gonna be really hard to be a student athlete, but it’s 100% doable, and you’re gonna thank yourself for being involved in sports if you love what you’re doing,” senior and varsity Cross Country captain Elise Allen-Study said.

Allen-Study, boys Soccer Captain junior Malik Griffin, and Girls Field Hockey Captain senior Natalie Drake shared their experiences and advice for student athletes this school year. 

All three captains started playing sports because of their siblings. Allen-Study reflected on how her sister had been running before, inspiring Allen-Study to start running, and eventually fall in love with it herself. 

Drake’s sister played field hockey, but she was always curious about the sport as well. “I was interested in the culture of it, and I liked playing sports,” Drake said.

Griffin talked about how both his parents and siblings contributed to his sports career. “My parents put me in it, and my siblings played it, so yeah,” he said. 

The captains believe that experiences playing their respective sports shaped them to be the individual they are today. 

Allen-Study explained that cross country has affected her outlook on other parts of her life. “It’s made me really dedicated with everything I do, and it’s also given me a lot of endurance when dealing with all hard problems in my life,” she said. 

“It lowkey gave me anger issues,” Griffin said, “but I’ve made a lot of friends because of it.” 

For Drake, field hockey is time-consuming, but she says it has made her a more social person. Drake also enjoys having something to work for. Varsity girls Field Hockey beat the rival Latin School at Latin’s homecoming game. “That was definitely really fun,” she said. 

Allen-Study’s highlight of her high school sports career is when she made All-Conference last year. Griffin’s proudest moment was being on varsity as a freshman. 

Natalie Drake and the rest of the field hockey team struggle with shin splints, pain in the shinbone due to overuse, every season. Her advice to overcome this obstacle is to take protocols seriously. 

Griffin talked about how he had to learn from his mistakes. “I wasn’t getting the playing time I wanted during the beginning of my sophomore year, so I decided to stop talking to people, messing around, help out and give everything that I had until I had proven I deserved a starting spot on the team,” he said.

Allen-Study’s biggest hardship throughout cross country is the balance with other parts of her life. “I just did it by, I guess, prioritizing and getting good prioritizing skills,” she said. 

Griffin’s strategy is to get all the sleep he can, and he puts school above his social life. “I’m social when I can, but sometimes you gotta put school over it,” he said. 

Drake utilizes field hockey as a way to socialize, and as a way to boost productivity. “I think I’m more productive when I’m doing exercise, so it actually helps me,”  she said.

Griffin’s advice for student athletes this year is to take taking care of your body seriously. Allen-Study’s advice this year is to keep going. 

As the fall sports seasons come to an end, the captains are thinking about how to keep their teams strong for next year. Drake believes what you do in the off-season affects how well you play and your role on the team.  “I think for people who are looking to find a leadership role on their team, putting in work during the off-season is really important,” she said.

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About the Contributor
Christina Merikas
Christina Merikas, Staff Writer
Christina Merikas is delighted to join the Weekly team as a Staff Writer. She is new to Parker and absolutely loves reading and writing. In between boba runs, she likes to bake, watch Gilmore Girls, play guitar, and run.