Pre-game ritual vital part of performance on field

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Students get hyped at the pep rally Friday, Oct. 9 prior to the Basil Bowl on Saturday. Eagles went on to win over St. Michael’s. A pep rally is just one of the revered pregame rituals important to students and team athletes alike. Photo by Nick Silva

Every athlete is different when it comes to getting ready for a game.

Varsity vs. Second Baptist 11-20-15 Nebel 146-min
A group of seniors at a pep rally

Some have specific pregame rituals that they feel like they have to do before they go out and compete. Others do not really do anything specific before games, only going with the flow and doing nothing special to get psyched. These rituals are very important because some athletes feel the need to do them in order to perform at their highest level. Athletes in different sports have different pre-game rituals.

A football player is probably going to do different things to get ready than a golfer will to get ready to play. Every athlete is different when it comes to pregame rituals and the things they like to do before games. Some athletes like to stay loose and joke around to take their mind off of the game, while others like to be quiet and focus on what they have to do to win the game.

“When I get up in the morning I’m already getting ready, and when 3:10 strikes, I chug my pedia lite and get my groove on,” senior Blake Steele said. “I put my headphones on and don’t speak to a single person.”

Some of Steeles’s favorite pregame music choices are those of 50 Cent and Wiz

“I just seclude myself from everyone. I don’t make interactions with anyone before games. I just seclude myself in my locker and hide, I don’t make eye contact with anyone.”

-Blake Steele, senior

This ritual must explain why Steele snagged an interception in a district game against Concordia Lutheran. When Steele is on the field everyone in the stadium knows it is a “no fly zone” for opposing quarterbacks. Senior running back William Heck also has a specific routine to his game day.

“At 3:10, I rush down to the cafeteria to grab a meal of a lifetime: perfectly made sandwich with a cold drink,” Heck said. After eating a hearty meal the veteran running back starts to prepare himself physically for the game. Heck says he likes a pregame workout powder mixed with their Gatorade.

“You know I like to take my time, and get every part of my body taped, just for precaution,” Heck said. “I really just go out and do me.” NFL running back Marshawn Lynch inspires Heck every day.

“Right before the game starts, I whisper words of inspiration to myself, ‘I know I’m gonna get got, but I’m gonna get mine more than I get got though.’”

-Willia Heck, senior

Those are the words Heck uses to live and play his incredible high school football career by.

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Michael Keating is a senior at St. Thomas. "I'm just here so I won't get fined."- Marshawn Lynch

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