Article by Andrew Dennison | Owl Staff
Once rivals in the past, but now united on the same team how will this different mix of athletes play out? A scenario like this is not uncommon at a junior college. Student athletes from all over the county who once competed against each other now play together under one school with one coach and one team.
The impression I gathered from most of the returning athletes was that coming into their first year at Harford, they did not expect to become close friends with their teammates. All the athletes from different high schools across the county may have been rivals in the past, but now they come together to build strong relationships between one another.
For the men’s lacrosse team, midfielder Sonny Botterill remembers, “[Last year] after the first night of practice, Fred Bodd’s party is where we all really got to know each other.” Some of the players are going on to play at the same colleges next year. Even a few who will not be playing collegiate lacrosse will be attending the same colleges and rooming together in the upcoming year.
Typically, in most aspects of college, a sophomore’s opinion varies greatly when compared to a freshman’s. However, when it comes to Harford athletics, freshmen quickly learn how important unity is for good team synergy. When asked about how attached the women’s basketball team is, freshman forward Kourtney Orr comments, “We do things like team dinners and go bowling. We also have tickets to an upcoming Maryland women’s basketball game.”
Just like the men’s lacrosse team, the women’s basketball team was also able to put aside their differences to form strong friendships with one another.
Whether it’s a four-year college or a junior college like Harford, teammates who want to win are willing to put aside their differences for the good of the team.
Although these athletes will typically never share more than two collegiate seasons with one another, the friendships they develop are just as strong a bond as those built at a four-year college.
To these athletes, Harford sports are not just a steppingstone for the next level. The unity and closeness developed between the student-athletes on Harford’s sports teams are things that they will not easily forget.