New faces fill the roster

In small town sports, familiar names appear and reappear with every changing season. JV girls soccer coach Jeremy Killinger brought 17 players out for his soccer team.

“We started with 13, but then when the girls realized how much fun it was, we improved to 17,” said Killinger.

Killinger left the recruiting up to the girls.

“They hit the social media hard asking girls to come out,” Killinger said.

That’s how sophomore Jacob Spadafore went out for the golf team.

“My friends told me to try out, and I wanted to play with my friends and have some fun,”

said Spadafore.

Sports can be used as motivation to get grades and have good attendance according to sophomore Sam Nichols.

“Sports benefit me because I get to be active and interact with new people. Plus, I think it helps people stay motivated to get good grades so they can participate,” Nichols said.

Not only for soccer and golf, but participation is on the rise for all Stockbridge athletics. The current participation rate is 58 percent for Stockbridge High School, according to Athletic Director Joseph Wenzel. That rate is the highest it has been in the last five years.

Benefits of participating in the athletic programs is that students academic performance increases.

A study by James Pivarnik and colleagues at the American College of Sports and Medicine showed that the fittest kids scored 30 percent higher on standardized tests.

Wenzel agrees they can benefits students overall academically.

“It’s great for kids to get involved in athletics, they benefit and find more success academically as well,” Wenzel said.

High school athletics are deemed important and is proved to help academics in the classroom.

“I believe that high school athletics provide a base of learning not available in the traditional classroom, and by participating, student athletes are better prepared for life after high school.” JV coach Killinger said.