Article & Photos: Jenna Daly ’21
As Suffield students gradually return to campus, many feel a sense of normalcy entering their lives again. While it is great to be going back, there are many parts of Suffield that are vastly different, including sports. Suffield athletics started this year as fun activities for the boarders to engage in while learning virtually. They transitioned into regular team practices when day students arrived at campus and live classes began.
During the two-week quarantine, there were only small periods of time where boarders could leave their dorms. A large portion of this was allocated for boarders to stay healthy and get active. They were able to participate in activities like kickball, basketball, tennis, and frisbee golf, which Mr. Gamere, Co-Athletic Director, said “was fun until we lost all of the frisbees.” Students were also allowed to use part of the turf fields to practice fall sports instead of participating in the day’s activity.
Various decisions have been made about the fall athletic season, but there are still a lot of unknowns that may affect sports as the season continues. All traditional fall sports teams will be practicing, including at least one sub-varsity team for most sports. There will also be opportunities to practice other sports like tennis, basketball, lacrosse, baseball, softball, and swimming. Tennis is a full-time fall sport this year, but the others are in addition to a regular fall sport. This means that multi-sport athletes do not have to miss out on either. Suffield is talking to a few other schools in hopes of some interscholastic competitions in October and November.
There are various precautions put into place in order for teams to practice and stay safe. There is no decision yet on spectators at sporting events, but Mr. Gamere said, “we have a lot of space on campus, so I could see that potentially happening.” Practice schedules and locker room rules have changed to keep athletes and coaches safe. Athletes will at least be wearing masks to and from practice.
Suffield has a long tradition of competitive sports teams that contribute to the school’s community. Some changes have been made, but Suffield athletics will remain the same at their core. Mr. Gamere explained that the staff “is excited to have everyone back” and they will be working hard to keep everyone on campus.