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Left to right: Caitlin Colbert, Richie Cuite, Caroline Reiner, Lucia Hu, and Hannah Leventhal
By Sabrina Romano and Gabi Roach
So many of North Shore Middle School eighth graders advanced to junior varsity and varsity teams at North Shore High School. Being on a high school team is more work. Students were promoted in many sports, including girls volleyball, lacrosse, track, tennis and softball; also athletes were moved up in boys wrestling, basketball, lacrosse, track, and soccer. Students who had the opportunity to advance have had to work hard to get there. Being on a high school team takes a lot of effort and time. When interviewed, NSMS gym teacher, Ms. Muscrella, and Emma Rivera and Taylor Berry, two eighth grade students, spoke openly about the subject.

Ms. Muscrella said,  “The middle school hasn’t always sent up as many students as they always have. Fewer students were sent up in the past.  In high school you’re going against older and more advanced students. But, if you’re pulled up in middle school, you learn high school material for sports earlier.” High school sports may seem unsafe with all the older kids, but overall, it is an amazing opportunity for the middle school students to advance and excel. 

Emma Rivera, an eighth grade runner, elaborates on the difficulty of playing up: “It’s different. The coaches are tougher and you have to wake up earlier on some days. I have a summer schedule to follow. A lot of people got moved up this year. A lot of people moved up to track.” As Emma said, sports take up a lot of time. The practices are every day after school and end up being for a few hours. The games and meets are competitive and nerve-racking, but once they’re in high school, the middle school students will know how much that experience benefited them. 

“It’s a step up. The coaches want you to do better. We have to practice a lot. Being on the high school team is more competitive. They haven’t sent up as many kids,” Taylor Berry, a softball player, explains. Coaches and players alike are serious about their sport and will not take kids who don’t aim for their best. 

Overall, high school teams are more competitive. Athletes practice and play until they can’t serve another ball or run another mile. It is a level up for middle schoolers and requires practice and focus. But, when students look back on their experience of varsity sports in middle school, they will be proud of themselves to know they had that opportunity.

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They may be shy, but they’ve got game.

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