Laced Up and Ready to Play: Middle School Students Start Fall Sports

The start of the future as middle schoolers get to participate in fall sports during X period

The Middle school flag football team doing conditioning during practice as they look to get stronger to better compete in the fall season.

Between tests, quizzes, discussions, and homework, students spend a lot of time sitting. Starting on September 12th, middle school sports allow kids to stand up, exercise, wiggle around, and enjoy themselves at the same time. 

Bishop’s provides a wide range of activities; co-ed cross country, boys’ flag football, girls’ lacrosse, co-ed swimming, and girls’ volleyball. The most advanced team in middle school is the Maroon team followed by the Gold team; if more people join, there will be a Black or White team.

In addition to overseeing all middle school sports, Middle School Athletic Director Mr. Nick Levine is also a middle school P.E. teacher and coach for the Bishop’s Boys’ Varsity Basketball team. He said, “It is fun seeing all the enthusiasm and joy the kids bring to middle school sports. I love seeing kids try a new sport or activity and realize they have a passion for it”. 

An example of a student who is new to the sport they are playing is Mason Minasian (‘26). He usually does fencing outside of school but due to his brothers playing football, he decided to give it a try. When asked what he was looking forward to, Mason said, “The first game and having fun”. Another example is Chloe Chen (‘26) who usually does ballet outside of school but is playing middle school volleyball. She said she is “definitely excited about learning more and playing more”.

Flag football is one of the more popular middle school sports and former middle school flag football coach and Spanish Teacher Gregg Luna looked forward to seeing the kids compete, become a team, learn, and have fun.

Student-athletes such as Amaree Maye (‘29) have played football since they were young. Amaree was five years old when he started playing and says he is looking forward to “getting to play a middle school sport since it is my first time being in middle school”. Many middle schoolers are like Amaree who have played sports for many years and wish to continue to play and improve during the fall season. 

Some people participate in middle school sports because of their friends, like Quinn Daniels (‘27). Quinn also plays football and said, “I have a lot of friends on [the team]”. Quinn is also excited about “trying to win the championship”. Not only does Quinn love football but he also plays football to build stronger bonds with his friends.

Middle schoolers do sports because they love and have a passion for it. Multi-sport student-athlete of football, lacrosse, and soccer Andrew Kao (‘28) is another who feels this way. He said, “I am excited about being able to play the sport I love with my friends.” Another example of playing a sport they love is Quinn who says, “I really enjoy playing the sport and I think we will be good”. 

Middle School Lacrosse is led by Ms. Meghan Carr. Having played lacrosse ever since 8th grade, Coach Carr said, “I don’t like to sit behind a desk and be behind a computer. My passion is to get up and move and in short, I love coaching and being active, interacting with kids, motivating kids to find something they will excel with.” Coach Carr uses her energy and her vast knowledge of lacrosse to help the players improve. Like Coach Carr, students are excited to develop their skills in the fall season. Sam Harvey (‘28) said, “We could beat some teams and get better”. For some students, it’s the competition aspect, but for others, it is for camaraderie. 

Besides giving kids many opportunities for community service and social innovation, Jacqueline Gomez also helps kids improve their volleyball skills. Coach Gomez has vast experience with volleyball as she started to play at a young age. This year will be Coach Gomez’s 13th year coaching middle school volleyball. Coach Gomez said, “I love coaching middle school-age players because they are eager and ready to learn”. Coach Gomez values relationships within the team and values giving back to the kids, but also loves competitiveness. Sierra Lever (‘25) said, “I think that Coach Gomez is a great coach. She laid the foundation of my volleyball mindset with her and Tod Mattox’s fundamentals of ETA (effort, teamness, and attitude).” 

All the middle school coaches love working with middle schoolers and are very proud when they see the middle schoolers play the same sport but on the varsity team in high school. Coach Gomez said, “I feel very honored to be coaching middle school volleyball for so long and proud to see the hard work and growth of players.” Coach Carr also enjoys seeing students continue to flourish in high school

In addition to being a Latin teacher, Dr. David Banta is one of the Co-Ed Cross-Country coaches you see on the quad with the middle schoolers during X period. Coach Banta said, “A lot of the kids move on from MS to HS cross country, and I am of course very pleased to see them do this and see them at meets.” He has been coaching for over nine years. One can see that Coach Banta has a passion for running because he is not only looking forward to running but is also seeing “kids running as fast as they can and trying to make themselves faster”. Beckett Langager (‘29), a possible future cross-country star, said, “I love running and it makes me feel alive.” 

Middle School Co-Ed swimming is the perfect way to grow and master the different strokes. This year due to only 4-5 students involved, the Co-Ed swimming is not participating in any matches and is there to teach kids how to swim and to have fun. The coach for middle school Co-Ed swimming is Chad Salley.

The best time to try a new sport is in middle school because the coaches are there to support the athletes.We have a wonderful community of coaches and teachers who aim to put kids in positions to create meaningful relationships and lasting memories,” said Coach Levine. Do not be afraid to try new sports. That is what the coaches love, seeing students trying sports for the first time. “Try things that you have never tried before, get out of your comfort zone, try things that are different,” said Coach Gomez. The coaches will always be there for you and support you in learning and improving in your sport. Go Knights!