A New Face on the Field

Jake Mann, Sports Staff

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The Junior Varsity and Varsity soccer teams have a unique way of preparing for the 2018-19 season. Instead of the usual conditioning exercises, they are switching things up this year and preparing across a variety of fields.

Typically, the training regimen is made up primarily of training ladders, cone slaloms, and so many laps that players might find themselves wondering if they accidentally went to cross country training. While these are still critical tenets of this year’s preseason, coaches Chris Reid and Basil Spauling have varied the practices since the first day with a new system from a new face to the field.

While the soccer team works hard on their own, they have a new driving force this year to push them into the season . Spauling, known to many students as Coach Basil, is a first-year JV coach and lifelong friend of  Coach Reid. While his kind words and short stature greet many students in the hallways, he maintains a large presence on the field. On the first day he led conditioning, Basil put his body between himself and the ball and shielded a senior off with ease for over 20 seconds.

“I am the smallest person here. And I could have stopped any one of you for as long as I needed,” said Basil to his team.

Content that he had made his point, he ended the drill and began an intense 20-minute P90X-esque session that pushed the physical limits of man. Not one player finished the entire exercise.

Basil barely broke a sweat.

Basil’s hard work and dedication to athleticism is a motivating force for his players, a sentiment he works to convey. Of his regimen, Basil said “I am one of the smallest players on the field. But my strength is what compensates, makes me worth my spot. I practice every day, even today, to become the best player I can be. I can do nothing about my height, but my mental and physical strength is what matters.”

On top of this new regimen, the coaches have brought in a new athletic curriculum for this year. Kickball, ultimate frisbee, and tennis are the subjects of the training and the broadness of the exercises continues to increase.

“Cross conditioning is the best way to have fun and still improve coordination as well as getting exercise in that isn’t just running,” said Reid, the (somewhat disputed) reigning foot-tennis champion.

As the soccer preseason winds to an end and a promising final season for so many players begins, the memories and training they received is what can and will push the team from being 19 players to 19 brothers.

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