Student-athletes put in extra work during the off season


Freshman Gabriele Brancatelli serves in an away match against Plainview-JFK on March 27. Port lost with a score of 2-5

Aiden Spizz, Assistant Sports Editor

In order to be successful during their seasons, athletes often have to put in extra work during their off seasons to train. Without practice and training, it is difficult to compete at as high a level as possible.

Because each sport requires varying skills and endurance, different athletes take different approaches to training, especially during the summer. For example, while cross country athletes focus on building a base of long distance running and weight training, volleyball athletes need to practice specific skills such as setting and spiking.

Consistent practice and training often leads to successful results. This is exemplified by a standout tennis and soccer player: freshman Gabriele Brancatelli. 

Brancatelli has competed this past year on two different varsity teams.  He played for the soccer team during the fall season, and during the spring season he was winning matches for the tennis team.  Throughout the summer, in between seasons and even during the season, he has put in much time preparing and improving. This upcoming summer, Brancatelli has many plans in order to stay in shape for next year.  He began his preparations last summer in anticipation for the sports seasons of this school year.

“I went to the fields with my friends and played soccer with them.  Also, I was regularly active, and my training for tennis over the summer helped me in the process of getting in shape for soccer,” said Brancatelli.

Not only was Brancatelli preparing and training for a sport that was about to start in a month, but he was staying in shape by practicing a sport that he wasn’t going to play at school until the end of the year.  This reveals the dedication and hard work he puts into every sport he plays.  During the winter seasons, he was constantly training for the tennis season.  

“Before the tennis season, I trained about six times a week in order to get ready,” said Brancatelli.

Fitting six times of training every week into the busy schedule of a high schooler is extremely difficult.  The fact that Brancatelli is able to do this is very impressive and shows he is what a student-athlete is supposed to be like.  He is able to balance his studies and his strenuous practice schedules.  Throughout the seasons, on top of the team practices, he independently trains in order to remain light on his feet and ready for any athletic challenges thrown at him.

“I trained about 12 hours a week throughout the season in order to be ready for my soccer games and tennis matches,” said Brancatelli.

This once again shows his dedication to these sports because instead of sitting home and playing Fortnite, which is what many teens spend their time doing nowadays, he has been trying to improve and become the best he can be.  Moreover, he plans on continuing to work during summer break.

“I intend to keep training for tennis, and to keep on being active throughout the summer.  Our coach has some exercises for us to do, so I might even do those,”  said Brancatelli.

Whatever he ends up doing this summer, he will be improving to be an even better version of himself for next season.

Brancatelli is one many Schreiber student-athletes planning on preparing for next year this summer. His strenuous schedule will allow him to continue to get better and better.  However, next year the hard work he does this summer will payoff.

Brancatelli’s work is just one of many examples of students putting in off season time to strive toward successful seasons. This is evident among many sports that often have specific off season training, such as football and track.