Varsity Newbies

New players earn their spots on varsity teams

Henley-Cleveland%2C+6%2C+runs+towards+his+opponent+to+retrieve+the+football

Courtesy Photo

Henley-Cleveland, 6, runs towards his opponent to retrieve the football

Sophomore Landyn Henley-Cleveland standing at 6’0 180, made the jump from the freshman football squad last year to the varsity team this year. During spring ball, Cleveland played on the varsity team ultimately earning his spot. 

“It feels good to be competing with the best competition, and I feel like I deserve it due to me running hills and staying after school to lift to get to this level,” Henley-Cleveland said. 

Sports opens up an environment to make new friends and bond with teammates and coaches. Events like travelling, eating and practice build up the team.

“The team vibe is way different [from the prior year on the freshman team],” Henley-Cleveland said. “We are closer, and we hang out a lot.”

Sophomore Jordan Henderson, who played JV as a freshman, debuted on the varsity volleyball team as the starting outside hitter. The passion and commitment to get to the next level between sub-varsity and varsity differ to the skill set of players.

“The talent between junior varsity and varsity isn’t that big, players are just more committed to their future like my teammate who is committed to Tulsa,” Henderson said.

Record achieving and goal breaking are a huge part of sports. Setting out a plan and looking at what to strive for can help athletes envision their aspirations.

“Usually varsity hasn’t made it past the second round, we are shooting for the fourth round of playoffs this year,” Henderson said.

Henley-Cleveland played his first official varsity game on Aug. 27. He completed the game with 11 total tackles and two forced fumbles. He also acquired defensive player of the week as a result of his performance. However, he’s had goals set for this season before his debut.

“I hope to get an offer this year and break the most tackles, which is 50,” Henley-Cleveland said.