By J1 Reporter Liv Putnam
Being a student athlete can be extremely taxing sometimes. Between school, practices, games, friends, family, and trying to get a decent amount of sleep, your schedule can get a little hectic. For junior Ashtynne Alberts, this is no big deal. Alberts is a varsity volley- ball and soccer player here at Marian. She has been playing both sports since childhood, and although they are quite different sports, Alberts seems to have no problem excelling in both. Alberts did not play soccer during her freshman and sophomore years, but focused on volley- ball. She played junior varsity volleyball for Marian those two years and competed with the varsity volleyball team this past fall.
“I was talking with my friends, Delaney
Stekr ‘18 and Delaney Gunn ‘18, during physics class one day about soccer and how their two goalies both graduated last season. They were discussing who they thought would be goalie for this season and I jokingly said, ‘Well, I’ll do it.’ I didn’t really mean it but they thought I was serious. Next thing I knew they were encourag- ing me to try out and I thought why not,” said Alberts.
The last time Alberts played on a competitive soccer team was in 2014, when she was in eighth grade. Back then, she was a forward for Gretna Soccer Club, so managing two sports is a norm for Alberts.
“Being a dual-varsity athlete has its ups and downs. It is so amazing to be a part of such a talented group of girls who have won state multiple times in the past couple years. It is very challenging keeping up with the team since they’ve played soccer every waking moment of their lives, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world. It’s such an awesome experience,” Alberts said. Balancing volleyball and soccer is a difficult task, but Alberts manages.
Alberts has soccer practice every day after school and some days has an additional volleyball practice following soccer. On top of juggling the constant practices, there is homework to add the after school equation.
“Juggling soccer and volleyball is quite challenging. My schedule has been hectic for the past couple weeks but all of my coaches have been very understanding about why I have to miss practice and are willing to work with me which is very helpful. I basically study every spare moment I have when I’m not practicing or sleeping,” Alberts said.
The 2017 varsity soccer team is a new squad with new players in almost every position. Twelve athletes returned to the team from last season, out of 21 on the roster. The team has had some hard fought games, and really had to work together as a team. “The dynamic is pretty similar. We are still cohesive but this year, it seems like we have better team camaraderie and we have lots of fun. We have a better team chemistry and are more focused on our team goals because of how tough our schedule is. It forced us to really connect quickly,” said senior team captain Rachel Johnson about the new squad.
With the new athletes on the team including the two new goalies, Marian is expected to compete at a high level this season.