For dual athletes like Tess Whitney, when one season ends, another one begins.
Whitney is a first-year here at Keene State College, and not only is she a goalkeeper on the field hockey team, but she is going to be a forward on the basketball team as soon as field hockey is over.
Head Women’s Basketball Coach Keith Boucher said that athletes who play two different sports have to learn whole different offense and defense skills. “I have a lot of respect for any athlete period, but [especially] athletes that play two sports,” Boucher said.
“It’s a grind, there’s a lot of people walking around campus that could be playing but aren’t and thats because of the sacrifice it takes. It’s not an easy thing to do,” Boucher said.
Whitney said that “the grind” is definitely worth it. “I’m really passionate about my sports and I appreciate the way it affects how you develop as a person,” Whitney said.
Boucher said this is a lot to throw at Whitney at once. “When it’s back to back, that’s a big commitment. It’s tough, you have to be mentally tough to do that because there’s no break,” Boucher said.
“I love both sports and I was actually sad when I thought I wasn’t going to be able to play basketball, but then I tried and got on,” Whitney said.
Rachel Loseby is also a goalkeeper on the field hockey team. “Even though she doesn’t start, she works her butt off and she’s ready to go in. If there’s a game I’m not playing well, she’s ready to go in and fill the void and bring the team up,” Loseby said.
“She’s constantly keeping up with the speed of playing a sport in college,” Loseby said.
Loseby said that by Whitey playing two college sports, “Keeps her in the mindset, [which is a] huge key in playing a college sport.”
Boucher said that Whitney has, “Very good work ethic, great attitude, so I think she’ll fit in well on the team.”
Whitney said that she hopes to play both sports all four years in her college career.
“Being a goalie, I like being able to focus on a specific thing, I can really hone in on my skills as a goalie,” Whitney said.
She also said the two games have two different atmospheres. “I love the strategy and the intensity of basketball,” Whitney said.
“She’s really committed for both [sports] so that’s awesome,” Loseby said.
“I give her a lot of credit,” said Boucher.
The field hockey team is playing their second round of the NCAA’s on Saturday, Nov. 10. “If we win that we’ll go into finals, if not, I think i’m going to transition right into basketball next week,” Whitney said.
“It sucks that they overlapped because basketball has already started and I’m going to have to jump right into it without going through preseason. I need to be in shape and ready for it right then and there so I can go right into games,” Whitney said.
Isabella Harris can be contacted