Double Team

“Those who work the hardest are the last to surrender” – Rick Pitino, American basketball coach

Imagine finishing an hour an a half soccer practice with your school team only to have to go to another hour-long club team practice in the scorching heat. In today’s society that is a pretty normal scenario for most teens around the world, especially at Cape Henry Collegiate. In the past 20-years, club sports have grown nationally and are becoming more essential in order to become the best. Since more teens are now playing for two separate teams, the skill level is rising making it harder for kids to just play for their school. 

Bryson Spell (’21) plays basketball for our school and on a club team. His club team is based out of Richmond, so three times a week he has to travel to Richmond and back for his practices. The good news is when basketball season starts up at Cape Henry, he doesn’t have to double up on practices. Instead, he will only have to travel on the weekends for games which is almost every other weekend. Other than for the love of the sport, his other main reason for doubling up is to play basketball in college. Bryson believes “that it is harder to be accepted for an athletic scholarship when you don’t play a club sport.” This simply is because more scouts are coming out to see club teams play rather than coming to a specific school event. Ali Gordon “20) plays field hockey for Cape Henry and a club team as well. She also believes that if she didn’t play a club sport, then she wouldn’t have been recruited by Ohio State. Nadia Norman (’20) says that “it may be harder to be noticed by college scouts if you don’t play a club sport, but it is possible”.

People don’t just play to be noticed; they also play to raise their skill level. The question is: can it become too much? Both Mr. Angilly and Mr. Horgan agreed that they have seen so many people get “burned out.” People start to become sick of the sport because they have had just too much of it. Nadia Norman loves to play basketball and hopes to play in college. She chose not to play club basketball in high school knowing that if she did play both, “my body would wear down faster if I just played more than one.” From a coach’s perspective, Mr. Angilly also worries about the player’s body wearing down too fast due to overworking the muscles. There is also double the risk of a player getting hurt and missing their season…or worse. But as Bryson says, “Playing a club sport and school sports are not for everyone.” Mr. Angilly believes, “In order to make it work, you have to be an organized person and be committed.”