This season is a stressful one for seniors, who are dealing with college applications and school work, and prepping for Spirit Week. However, for a collective few at Paly, their fall semester looks di erent than that of an average high school senior. Several senior athletes at Paly have already com- mi ed to or are deciding on a university where they plan to play their respective sport. In that group, even fewer seniors have turned down spots at prestigious universities in order to explore their options. ough some may criticize athletes for having what looks like an objectively easier senior year, these students have all put hours of work into their sports, and many say they are eager to see where they will go and what they will do next.
How do you train?
Ally Scheve: “I have been playing soccer since age four and started club soccer at age 10. We practice as a team three days a week, and then a lot of the team does outside strengthening once a week. en, we have one or two games a weekend.”
Emily Tomz: “I started playing soccer when I was around 5 years old, and I joined a club team when I was eight. My club team practices three to four times a week with one or two games on the weekends, if not a tournament or showcase. Paly soc- cer practices or plays games every weekday, sometimes including Saturday practices.”
Julianna Roth: “I have been playing volleyball since sixth grade, and I have been playing pretty competitively for four years. Playing on varsity, we play ve days a week, lift once a week and usually have two games [a week]. During club season we would practice three times a week, lift once a week and when we would have tournaments, we would play both days on the weekends and sometimes an extra day. I also train on my own. I run and lift by myself.”
Zoe Lusk: “I have been doing club swimming since I was 10, [I have been] swimming in general since I was four. I practice eight to nine times a week for about 21 hours total every week.”
Why that College?
Susanna Limb: “I’ve always wanted to go to this school, so when I got an o er, I took it right away. I also really like the overall environment and their sports facilities. I’ve gotten mul- tiple emails from other colleges, but their academics were really bad, so I didn’t pursue anything with them”
Ally Scheve: “Swarthmore for me was great t because it allows me to continue to play soccer competitively, and it is a good school for me academically. I had looked at other D3 schools, and I got contacted after tournaments from some D1 and D2 schools. ey didn’t really align with what I wanted out of a school academically.”
Julianna Roth: “I have been in contact with lots of other coaches and schools, and have had o ers from a few other col- leges. I chose Grinnell because I decided it was the school I wanted to go to even if I did not play volleyball. It was really important to me to nd a school where I could be happy re- gardless if I played a sport or not, and when I visited Grinnell, I could just see myself tting in. I loved the environment, the high rigor of academics, and with the culture Grinnell pro- motes, [I can] see myself tting in. I loved the environment, the high rigor of academics, and the culture Grinnell promotes. I was really excited about the idea of playing at Grinnell be- cause the volleyball program has a new coach and is currently in a rebuilding stage. I loved the idea of coming in, making an impact right away and playing with the purpose of improving program. I felt like playing at Grinnell I would be playing with a purpose, not just to play, and that really excited me.”
Emily Tomz: “The Claremont Colleges were actually the rst schools I ever visited, and the women’s soccer coach has always been so incredibly nice. e team atmosphere is won- derful. e school is amazing, and everything felt right when I nally decided that Pomona is the place I want to be.”
What was the application process like for you?
Zoe Lusk: “Before my recruit trip, my GPA and test scores get approved by admissions. I turned in my application to Duke as a regular decision application before my trip. I had already done it over the summer. When I decided to commit to Duke, the coaches told the admissions o ce to go over my application. Once I was approved by admissions, I received a likely letter, which pretty much means I am accepted into the school unless I commit a felony. en I moved up my application to early deci- sion and should get in o cially whenever the early decision stu comes out.”
Emily Tomz: “My commitment to apply early to Pomona means that I will apply early decision, which is binding. e soc- cer coach then will support my application as it goes through the admissions process. In the summer, I got a positive pre-read from Pomona admissions. Based on my transcript, test scores and se- nior year class schedule, it looked to them that I would get in if I were to apply early. ey still can’t o cially guarantee admission, but I’m hoping that everything will go as planned.”
Julianna Roth: “I have been talking to the Grinnell coach since last spring and went and visited the school last April. I did a tour and information session, met the coach, and had lunch with some players. e coach had come seen me play at a tournament, and I sent him a lot of clips and information about my team. I also spoke to him on the phone a few times. is fall, I went back to the school, stayed overnight and did a whole o cial recruiting visit. I had an amazing time and fell in love with the program and school. After I visited another school for volleyball, I decided Grinnell was the right place for me. I called the coach, told him I wanted to commit to the team and apply early decision. I have been working on my application for Grinnell and should be able to submit it really soon. ere is no real guarantee that I will get in because Grinnell is a highly selective school, but I feel pretty con dent that I have a good shot.”
What advice do you have for younger players?
Ahmed Ali: Just reach out as much as possible and play in as many nationally-ranked events as possible. Reach out to schools early by emailing and visiting them and also build good rela- tionships with the coaches
Max Jung Goldberg: “They are not going to recruit kids who are just good ball players. It’s really easy for a coach to say this kid is a good baserunner, this kid can hit the ball really far and so on. It’s really hard to nd a kid who is going to have a unique and really special attitude that he can bring to the team, that will make him competitive on and o the eld. It’s not necessarily just about being super talented. When you get to the next level, everyone has talent. It’s about the guys who have it between the ears and be able to control their emotions, body language and overall the way they carry themselves. It’s never just about you. It’s about pushing your teammates, pushing yourself. ere are 35 guys on the roster and you need to realize that each night, there is going to be a new guy to step up, a group effort. e biggest takeaway that [younger players] should get from this is, in order succeed there are two things you need to know: be relentless in your grind and be selfess.”