The student news site of Bellaire High School

Three Penny Press

The student news site of Bellaire High School

Three Penny Press

The student news site of Bellaire High School

Three Penny Press

Different sports, same passion

Athletes share their experiences with multiple sports
Will Hazen plays for Bellaire as a long stick defenseman. Bellaire would beat St. Thomas 11-4 in their second district playoff game to make the state playoffs.

He lines up under center. The lights and pressure of Bellaire football fall on him. 

He finds himself in a pack; they jostle for their positions as the starter pistol blasts. Is this the run that will get him noticed? 

He positions himself at the tee; the swings blur together as he trudges ever closer to the hole.  

All three of these athletes ⁠— junior track, cross country and tennis athlete Jatin Presse, sophomore golf and football athlete Jonathan Bhlum, and junior football and lacrosse athlete Will Hazen ⁠— are involved in multiple school sports. Each student commits to the practices and games that can take up hours of their time before and after school.

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“I’m spending three to four hours a day on the sports and then there’s the meets on the weekends,” Presse said. “I have to be a lot better at time management and try to get my sleep in, but I’ve been managing to juggle it this year.”

Bluhm, who has played football since seventh grade and golf since he was 9, has learned the same lessons of juggling his time despite playing two completely different sports. 

“Football is a really big commitment,” Bluhm said. “So I’ve learned [the] commitment [needed] to manage my school, to schoolwork and to football, so I feel like that’s helped me a lot.” 

Despite the time commitment, the players said that they have learned valuable lessons and skills from each of their sports. 

When we’re playing football, our coaches tell us to always have poise and character. ‘Yes, sir. No, sir. Yes, ma’am. No, ma’am,’” Bluhm said. “And then in golf, if you have a bad shot, you can’t let it affect you, just like how if you have a bad day, you can’t let it affect the rest of your life.” 

Sophomore Will Hazen ⁠⁠— quarterback of the varsity football team, defenseman for the varsity lacrosse team and small forward for the JV basketball team⁠— said the biggest of these lessons learned was leadership. 

“Everyone’s looking at me for guidance and that’s a big thing,” Hazen said. “Just being a leader, helping your teammates out when they’re not doing well, letting them know that, ‘You’re good. We all have bad games. You’ll get the next rep.’”

Being a multiple-sport athlete has its advantages. The unique aspects of each sport find a way to translate to each of the athletes’ other sports. 

“Football is my favorite sport, [but] because I play defense in lacrosse, basketball [translates better into being a quarterback] because it’s definitely more [centered] toward being an offensive player than lacrosse,” Hazen said.

Though football and golf may seem quite different, Bluhm has found similarities between them. 

“You’ve got to stay focused throughout the whole time [in] those sports,” Bluhm said. “You have to have a competitive edge in both.”

Similarly, Presse has been able to combine aspects of cross country and track into his tennis game. 

“Tennis is more sprinting, [so] track probably does [help with tennis more],” Presse said. “[Cross country and track] are not the perfect matches, but that endurance helps [with tennis].”

Living the life of a multi-sport athlete is tough, but the confidence and experience that each athlete gains makes this life worth it. 

“[I learned to] play confident in all my sports,” Hazen said. “Don’t overthink it too much. Just be yourself and know that you can do it. Go and play confident.”

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