A majority of students in high school find a way to balance their hectic schedules by playing a sport but typically, the only sports that receive recognition are those that are school sponsored such as volleyball, basketball, and football. There are a few students, though, who branch off into other recreational sports outside of school.
Senior Abbey Taylor has been involved in field hockey since the 8th grade. She has been associated with Top Dog Field Hockey Club from 8th through 11th grade, one of seven teams running through the USA Field Hockey Association to help develop athletes for playing at the Junior Olympic and Olympic levels.
“I love the pace of field hockey. It’s really fast and keeps me super engaged when I’m on the field or I’m just watching,” Taylor said.
Not only is this sport prominent in the USA, but it’s found all across the globe, Taylor explained.
“Field hockey is huge in Europe, Asia, and South America. I had the opportunity to go see field hockey in the London 2012 Olympic Games, and seeing all the different teams from all different countries was amazing.”
Taylor is unsure whether or not she will pursue field hockey in college. “If the opportunity arises, I’d love to, but it’s definetly not a make or break,” she said.
Senior Adycen Cooper has ridden horses since she could walk and currently shows Tennesee Walking Horses competitevly.
“The show season is usually from late spring to early fall but I train a lot in between then,” Cooper explained.
Cooper’s mother had always ridden horses and showed them, and so she decided that she would give it a try. The horses she rides are owned by her grandparents.
“My grandparents own a farm of 16 horses and we currently have 2 in training,” Cooper said. The horses are trained professionally in Tennessee.
Cooper plans to continue this sport after high school. “I will definitly be seeking to continue this in college,” she said.
Freshman Nick Rosenbaum has been swimming for the Milford Area Swim Team for seven years.
“I began when my mom signed me up after seeing me swim at my neighborhood pool that summer. She wanted me to be a runner too, and she knew swimming was a good endurance training for runners. It backfired on her though, when I decided to stick with swimming, and I never ran. I might run one day though,” Rosenbaum explained.
“What I love most about swimming is that it is the perfect sport. I progress at my own pace, yet I can still compete against others in the pool. There is also time during meets and practices to spend with friends,” Rosenbaum said. “Also, my coaches are great and are some of the greatest coaches in the world. They have lots of duties as coaches, yet they still work with all of their swimmers, and personalize their messages about swimming at everyone. They really care.”
Freshman Isabella Daley is an avid gymnast. She has been involved in gymnastics since she took classes when she was a toddler, and has been pursuing it ever since. She is involved in the division known as Artistic Gymnastics, which has each competitor perform individually. It contains four different events; vault, bars, beam, and floor for girls, as well as floor.
She is currently a part of Blue Ash YMCA team, formerly known as the Bounders. “I enjoy having gymnastics as a way to try new things, and I would be bored with way too much energy if I did not get to do gymnastics,” she said.
The competitions are typically on weekends and begin at the end of October and run until March. Regional competition follows in mid-April and nationals are in the summer.
Along with the fun of the sport comes a bit of responsibility.
“A responsibility that is specific to my team is that we have to set up all of our equipment before practice because we do not have our own gym to practice in. We use the basketball gym at the YMCA, so our parents have to put together all of the large or complicated pieces of equipment like the bars and beams while the gymnasts roll out the floor,” Daley explained.
“As far as my future in gymnastics is concerned, I plan on doing gymnastics with my team until I go to college. As of now, I do not plan on doing college gymnastics. However, I love gymnastics, and I hope that I will be able to become a coach for my team when I am in college and maybe even after that too,” Daley said.
Junior Sierra Meyer is a part of the Ohio Hunter Jumper Association and the Kentucky Hunter Jumper Association. She has ridden horses for 5 years now, beginning when her father encouraged her to ride because of his enjoyment of it when he rode when he was younger.
She rides often, ranging from two to four hours every day, and plans to continue her riding career throughout her college and adult life. She owns two horses of her own, OJ and Sullivan.
Meyer plans to pursue horseback riding in the future. “I plan to go to a college with equestrian studies and an equestrian team so I can further my career to become a horseback riding trainer,” she added.