Freshmen Phenoms

Pros and cons of being a freshman on a varsity team


No. 8, freshman Elisabeth Uschold, leaps up in the air to block the shot of her opponent during a volleyball game. Photo by Manxiang Fu.

How would you feel if you were playing athletes three years older than you? 

Well, that is the case for freshman varsity players.

Volleyball player Elisabeth Uschold was the lone freshman on the varsity girls’ volleyball team this fall. She happened to be 2nd in hitting percentage and solo blocks for the varsity team.

“When I got on varsity I felt nervous and scared because I was the only freshman on varsity, but after a couple of practices I got to know the girls and was excited for the season,” Uschold said.

Uschold goes on to say that being on varsity as a freshman was a very good and exciting experience for her as a new student at South High.

Freshman basketball player Ava Hill was also a freshman on her varsity team. She said she had a similar experience to Uschold. 

“When I got on varsity I felt relieved because I worked very hard for it and was excited and more confident,” Hill said.

Both Uschold and Hill added that the varsity teammates were very welcoming and made them feel comfortable very quickly. 

Freshman John Tanurchis is on the varsity boys’ soccer team this fall. 

“My teammates made me feel very welcoming and included me in lots of activities inside and out,” he said.

All three of these freshmen talked about the stress of tryouts and all the hard work they had to do to make varsity. 

Michelle Dempsey coaches varsity for both girls’ basketball and volleyball at South High. She talks about what she looks for at tryouts and what kids should strive for to make varsity, and what makes a good athlete. 

“Grit, work ethic, willingness to learn, ability to bounce back from mistakes, love and passion of the sport, and willingness to work in the offseason is what makes a great athlete,” she said.