Senior Athletes Face New Challenges While Transitioning to the Collegiate Level

Kate Hutton, Staff Reporter

Student-athletes of all-season sports experienced a drastic change in their college recruiting journey. With an abrupt end to last year’s spring sports as well as not starting a fall season as expected, Vikings haven’t had competition since March.

“I mostly miss my teammates,” senior volleyball player Kayla Bolen said. “My teammates were so much fun to be around on and off the court. I miss the dancing, the yelling, the adrenaline and so much more.”

Student-athletes like senior Aaron Lautenschlager, who plays baseball, feel deprived from playing with or even against their friends. 

“The thing I miss most about my season was being able to compete against all my senior friends that go to different schools for the last time,” Lautenschlager said.

For a lot of student-athletes, the field or court can be considered their second home.

“(I miss) Being around my second family and the game atmosphere,” senior football player Sean Davis said. 

Not only are students missing the opportunity to play this year, but this can also have  an effect on college recruiting as well. 

“Corona has affected my recruiting process,” Lautenschlager said. “Most of the Division I schools that I was in contact with my junior year stopped recruiting and bringing in the 2021 class.” 

Every sport, no matter what season, seems to have a similar problem. Bolen said canceled college visits impacted her recruiting.

“I was being recruited by D-I schools, and it was frustrating because I was never able to actually visit the campus or see any of the coaches in person,” she said.

Especially for fall sports, athletes aren’t able to get updated footage to market themselves with. 

“It is not allowing me to show coaches what I can do because I don’t have film ready,” Davis said.

Photo of Sean Davis | Viva Loudoun; Photo of Kayla Bolen | Viva Loudoun; Photo of Aaron Lautenschlager | Courtesy of Aaron Lautenschlager /Art | Sarah St. John