Through digital signage, All-School Meetings and class-wide e-mails from Grade Level Deans or Council members, students are overwhelmed with announcements and tend to focus only on things that directly pertain to them. Sifting through this information often means that sports events for teams a girl is not on get pushed aside to make room for more pressing news.
Although the Marlborough community is known primarily for its academically rigorous schedule, a majority of students, teachers and coaches agree students should increase their support for their athletic classmates, saying that more regular game attendance would better unify the School and appreciably affect how well the athletes play.
According to several coaches and student athletes, the average student attendance at most athletic events adds up to fewer than ten supporters.
“In comparison to other schools, we could do better,” Physical Education Department Head and Coordinator of 7/8 Athletics Julie Napoleon said. “Not having cheerleaders and spirit leaders affects our school spirit a little. Students are so busy with other activities and commitments.”
Many students and teachers said the lack of student attendance at games, meets and matches is mostly due to girls’ academic preoccupation.
“We should be more of a supportive, spirited School,” volleyball player Kate’14 said. “However, everyone is so academically driven that when we have free time we just go home and take naps.”
In addition, a number of athletes and coaches, including 7/8 Cross-Country Coach and math instructor Amanda Kissinger and Varsity Tennis and Water Polo player Claire’14, noted that some sports receive more attention than others due to the fact that some teams compete at facilities not located at Marlborough.
“Basketball and volleyball have a lot for school spirit because, they [play in] a gym here, whereas tennis and water polo games happen off campus. Therefore they have less of an audience,” Claire said.
Several girls said the student body could ameliorate the issue by paying more attention when athletes announce the times and locations of their games. Others suggested that clubs or other extracurriculars could decide to attend athletic events together.
“Since a lot of athletes attend plays and choral concerts, it would be interesting if different [groups] came together…and attended our games in order to integrate the cohesiveness of this School,” Claire said.
Furthermore, a number of athletes said that increased attendance would be more than a gesture of unity and spirit and could feasibly affect the outcomes of games.
“We play better when we have more support,” Varsity Basketball player Clara ’14 said. “The energy of the crowd energizes us.”