Like most highschool athletes, Lauren Huber noticed her standard schedule exit the window due to the pandemic.
Huber misplaced her junior observe season when the Illinois Excessive College Affiliation canceled all spring sports activities in 2020 as COVID-19 took maintain.
When her senior 12 months started final fall, Huber didn’t know if she’d be capable to cycle via her standard sports activities of volleyball, basketball and observe. So she determined to improvise.
The consequence was probably the busiest and most formidable schedule of any prep athlete within the state. For the 2020-21 faculty 12 months, Huber has competed in six sports activities: tennis, bowling, volleyball, basketball, observe and softball.
As her hectic 12 months winds down towards the backdrop of sports activities returning to a semblance of regular, she regrets not a minute of it.
“We’ve been ready all 12 months for issues to open up,” she mentioned. “You may’t be sad about being too busy.”
Right here’s a have a look at how Huber’s faculty 12 months unfolded:
When volleyball was pushed again indefinitely as a higher-risk sport, Huber opted to play tennis, one of many few fall sports activities that proceeded on schedule.
“That ended and there was some time we had been considering basketball won’t occur,” Huber mentioned.
So she joined the bowling group. When the IHSA abruptly introduced in January basketball was coming again quickly, Huber discovered herself juggling two sports activities.
That segued into volleyball, which was a spring sport in line with the state’s revised four-season calendar.
Now it’s the IHSA’s summer time season and Huber is nearing the end line of her private marathon by juggling observe and softball.
Many colleges wouldn’t let an athlete strive so many sports activities, however Glenbard East is the exception to the rule.
“They’ve been actually versatile and understanding,” Huber mentioned of her coaches. “Our athletic director (D’Wayne Bates), he performed 4 sports activities in highschool, so he’s supportive of it.”
Women basketball coach Nicole Miller isn’t stunned Huber — who will play that sport at Illinois Wesleyan — has been capable of pull this off.
“She’s the very best feminine athlete that’s walked via our doorways,” Miller mentioned, “Unbelievable, unimaginable work ethic. Superb athletic talent, leaping capability, velocity, endurance.”
Huber led Glenbard East’s women observe group to the primary convention title in program historical past Thursday, profitable the 800 meters and 300 hurdles and taking second within the shot put.
The 800 is Huber’s finest occasion. However she had by no means competed in both the shot or hurdles earlier than this spring.
“She will do any occasion,” women observe coach Molly Gstalter mentioned. “She’s such a fast learner, such a coachable athlete.”
Huber credit her dad and mom for serving to make all of it work. That features driving her from one occasion to a different this spring, generally whereas she’s altering uniforms within the automotive.
A lot as Huber enjoys staying busy in sports activities, she’ll be prepared for a break when observe and softball wind down in a number of weeks.
“It’ll be bizarre having no schedule,” she mentioned. “(However) I feel we’re attempting to make up for misplaced time (with) household holidays.”
Huber isn’t the one native athlete with a heavier workload this faculty 12 months.
Libertyville senior Andrew Clark has juggled 5 sports activities: cross nation, basketball, swimming, water polo and observe.
Clark, who’s heading to Georgetown with hopes of competing in membership cross nation, has executed that sport, basketball and water polo all through highschool.
This 12 months, the celebs aligned to do extra
“I’ve all the time been enthusiastic about doing swimming and observe,” he mentioned. “The seasons form of lined up.”
Like Huber, he was pessimistic about basketball as months handed with out phrase from the IHSA.
“I actually didn’t assume it was going to occur,” Clark mentioned.
However it did, and as he nears the top of a busy however rewarding 12 months, Clark has no regrets.
“It’s undoubtedly been exhausting at instances,” he mentioned. “Total, I wouldn’t change a factor. It’s been rewarding to satisfy a whole lot of new individuals.”
In contrast to Huber and Clark, Elk Grove senior Joe Gaskill isn’t doing any new sports activities this 12 months. However he confronted some challenges when the sports activities calendar opened up abruptly.
“We went from virtually nothing, (then) there was a degree I used to be doing three (soccer, wrestling and observe) in a single week,” Gaskill mentioned.
A superb scholar with a 4.5 grade-point common on a 4.0 scale. Gaskill plans to play soccer and baseball at Illinois Wesleyan. Proper now, he’s wrestling at 170 kilos and enjoying shortstop for the Grenadiers.
“I don’t thoughts being busy,” he mentioned. “I used to be like, if I’ve the chance to (do all three sports activities), I’m going to go for it.”
In spite of everything these idle months, how might it’s another manner?