Through the first week of the fall season, what has been one thing that has surprised you about the season so far?
Sports Writer / Photographer
I am going to have to say how intrigued I have been watching the 7-on-7 football. Growing up, football was my sport. I played from 5th grade all the way through high school, I coached for the St. Albans Steelers program for a few years, I commentate, I write about it, anything I can do with football I try to do. Going into this year I was a little skeptical about whether I would be as into it because it wasn’t traditional football in a year when nothing is really what it was just seven months ago. But after seeing my first 7-on-7 football game while commentating for Northwest Access on Friday for the BFA-St. Albans vs. Colchester game, I was more into the game that I thought I was going to be. It was still a fun game to watch and was neat to see something a little different. And even though it’s not the normal football, it’s still much better than nothing. And one thing I am glad the state decided to do was not split the teams up. Earlier plans for the sport had the quarterbacks, running backs and receivers playing the normal, varsity-esque schedule where the linemen would play in their own games at the same time. I wasn’t a huge fan of the idea of splitting a team up like that, so I am glad they went to the format they did where the linemen play in the first and third quarters and backs play in the second and fourth. It makes for a more team aspect and as a former lineman myself, it’s exciting to see other linemen get to show off what they can do in the skills positions. While it’s not quite the same as traditional football, and the stands aren’t packed with people like they normally are (games are limited to 150 people), it’s still much better than not having anything at all during these times and still an enjoyable product on the field.
Having only seen one game, Patrick Walker of the MVU boys soccer team looks like the real deal in the Thunderbird defense. He often seems to be around the ball and makes quick decisions with it. He headed out two balls that were destined to go in in the game against Milton. He was also part of the MVU golf team that competed at sectionals this past week. Coach Hubbard remarked that he is the leader in the backfield and can do the job against the other team’s best forwards.
Sports Writer / Photographer
One of the most surprising things to me was field hockey as a whole. I’ve never seen it played before, and it’s a pretty interesting and a fun sport to watch! To be even more specific the MVU team has impressed me immensely, in game one, they had a rough go of it but by the end of the game it was looking like they were putting things together. In the second game they took that last quarter of the first game and built on it and looked really strong, I think they’re going to be a really interesting team to watch this year.
One of the things that’s stood out to me during this wildly different COVID fall sports season is the grit of the volleyball teams in Franklin County. I attended a game in Enosburg last week between the Hornets and the Bobwhites. The field was soaked and rain was falling steadily. Those athletes took the field with enthusiasm and played with so much determination! Many teams play rainy games, but volleyball in Vermont is a court sport and is always played indoors. To see these athletes compete as they did in such horrible conditions was inspiring! They love the game, and they’re determined to get the most out of the season. It was a pleasure to watch them (from under the safety of my umbrella), and I look forward to covering the next match!