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  • Writer's pictureELLIOT POTOTSKY

Lasers make early return for winter training and competition

Sophomore Gabe Qua dunks in pre-game warmups before a game against Norwich University. Photo by Joe Giacco

During the winter recess, student-athletes and coaches return to campus early, embracing a familiar routine of practice, training, and competing.

“We like to give the athletes at least a week to prepare,” Athletic Director Kristy Walter said. “We don’t like to give them too much time off because then they’re just completely deconditioned.”

Men’s basketball forward Quinton Partee Jr. proved just why Walter’s comments hold such value, saying the team was out of shape when they returned to campus, and adding that it took them “four days to get back in shape.”

Similarly, track and field Head Coach Ben Biello says it is necessary for his players to come back early because the team needs to prepare for their indoor season, while also getting in enough competitions before the conference championship meet.

Junior Sinclair Samuels practicing shotput during a winter break practice. Photo courtesy of Ben Biello

“We need to have them come back to get a good solid week of training and prepare for that meet,” Biello said.

Outside of getting back to top-tier physical form and gearing up for intense competition, athletes must get conditioned to their inevitable return to their hectic routine once the next semester starts.

“We practiced in the morning, late at night, and had a team lift in between,” said men’s volleyball libero Alex Weinhaus.

As for the basketball team, Partee Jr. said, “it was a lot at first,” noting their daily schedule involved getting up early, going straight to morning practice, eating and relaxing, and then going back to practice later on in the day.

On the other hand, Biello said the team did not do double sessions of practice during the break, noting that after their morning session, most of the athletes’ time went into team bonding and having fun.

“It’s pretty free range and very low key,” Biello said.

Moving away from workouts and practices and towards the few games held at Lasell University, Walter touched on how much effort goes into making sure a sporting event runs smoothly.

“We finagle our way around the staff,” Walter said. “It doesn’t cost any more than other games. Some people do two jobs.”

Ariel Foster competing at the New Balance track during a winter break meet. Photo by Mike Broglio

Further, Walter explained that many different people will help fill the gameday staff, including current students, local alumni, and even members from the opposing team.

“We adjust and prioritize what has to be done,” Walter said. “We have to film the game. We need to do pre-game announcements and run the [National] Anthem. We don’t need two floor people—sometimes just one. We make it work.”

Despite the time and effort that goes into being a part of athletics, many of the participants, especially the athletes, are enjoying the grind one must put into their craft.

“I wouldn’t trade [volleyball] for anything. I love the sport,” said Weinhaus. “I love improving my game and getting better as a team.”


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