Seniors reflect on canceled spring season

Jonathan Lidskin, Sports Editor

On April 21, the IHSA announced its decision to cancel state tournaments for spring sports due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As a result, many seniors lost their last season of high school sports. Below, some of these athletes share their stories about their experiences playing for Glenbrook North.

 

Senior Terese Choe was up to the plate in a game against Vernon Hills during her junior year. The Spartans had been trailing the Cougars for most of the game, but that deficit was erased when Choe hit a home run to give GBN the lead and ultimately win the game.

Choe said in a video conference that this was a moment she would never forget from her time playing softball at GBN.

When Choe first found out about the possibility of the season being canceled, she said she was extremely upset despite already knowing there was a chance the team wasn’t going to play.

“I cried,” said Choe. “I had a feeling something like this was going to happen and it was brutal.”

Choe had played with her softball teammates for a long time, both in and out of school, and will especially miss the younger girls on the team who she viewed as her little sisters, she said.

Choe always enjoyed the team aspect of softball, she said.

“If you do well, it will benefit your team,” said Choe. “Softball is a sport where you’re in the dugout a lot, … so you get such a good bond with your teammates.”

 

In a regional semifinal game against Buffalo Grove during his junior year, senior Danny Fitzpatrick hit his first varsity home run in the first inning of the game. However, his favorite moment in that game came in the seventh inning when junior Jack Fitzharris hit a three-run home run to tie the game and send it to extra innings.

In a video conference, Fitzpatrick said being around his teammates and coaches when that happened made him feel like the team’s hard work paid off.

Fitzpatrick was looking forward to his last season playing for GBN because he will not be playing in college, he said.

Senior Quinn Meier said in a video conference that he will be playing baseball next year at Millikin University.

“I was upset because there’s something about having that senior season that is really special,” said Meier. “I was also a little bit nervous because next year I’m going to be playing baseball at Millikin, so I was really looking forward to having a good senior season to end on to go into college with a lot of confidence.”

According to Fitzpatrick, he loved playing baseball because of how difficult it was.

“It’s a game that you can think that you are so good, … and the game will humble you,” said Fitzpatrick. “There’s never a moment where you’re like, ‘This game is too easy.’”

 

Senior Ellie Scott was on the soccer field with her teammates when they first heard of certain games being canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. When the team heard this, they thought it was a joke and could not believe it. But then one day before practice, they were told to meet in the fieldhouse where they were told that the season was postponed and to keep up with training.

“When we all got called into the field house, we were ready to cry because we were supposed to have an amazing year,” Scott said in a video conference.

Scott’s favorite memory from her time playing GBN soccer was during her sophomore year when the Spartans knocked off Glenbrook South in penalty kicks in the Glenbrook Cup, she said.

“I’m a goalie, so I watch from the other side of the field and I just saw my whole team run down the field,” Scott said.

The mix of team dynamic and competitiveness were the reasons she continued to play soccer for so long, Scott said.

“Soccer girls are kind of crazy, but it’s so fun just to be with them and be on the team,” said Scott. “Once you add in being a good team … it’s just an insane season of fun and winning.”

 

When senior Ethan Brodell first found out the high school volleyball season was canceled, he felt robbed. He had been playing club volleyball during the offseason to prepare for the high school season.

“Since freshman year, we’ve been waiting for our senior year, knowing this was going to be the year we had a chance at state,” Brodell said in a video conference.

Brodell was so motivated to win state that when the season was put on hold, he contacted his club volleyball coach to try to get court space for the team to practice, he said. He was unable to get court space, but the team still stayed in touch.

Now that his high school volleyball career is over, Brodell will miss the players and the coaches the most, he said.

“Even when we didn’t win, I went to every practice just excited to be with the guys,” Brodell said.

Brodell’s favorite part of GBN volleyball was playing with the team last year, he said.

“It made all of volleyball kind of worth it for me,” said Brodell. “That whole team … we were a brotherhood up and down.”