AHS teams visit local middle schools for coaching


Swim coaches and players lead core workout drills with students at Holmes Middle School.

AHS teams have visited local middle schools throughout the fall, helping to encourage younger kids to take an interest in sports and develop their skills.The varsity baseball, basketball, swimming and softball teams all went to Poe and Holmes middle schools after school for one hour. The teams are meeting with kids possessing all ranges of skill level, and trying to work on fundamental skills and team building activities.
The AHS varsity baseball team visited Poe middle school on Oct. 5.
“We worked on throwing drills to teach the mechanics and arm motions, fielding ground balls, and hitting off the tee so that the kids could learn a basic swing and work on making solid contact.
At the end we were able to do a small scrimmage with the kids so we could try to combine all the skills taught,” senior Finn Scott-Daniels said.
Several of the students began the practice with no experience, but were able to show vast improvement throughout the duration of the practice, creating excitement for the future of Annandale baseball.
The basketball team has made multiple visits to both Poe and Holmes middle schools on Sept. 21 and Sept. 23, working on drills including the three man weave, shooting, passing and layup lines.
“It was great and a fun experience to interact with the middle school kids and teach them the game of basketball,” junior Davida Raharinaivo said.
The team will travel to both Holmes and Poe middle schools again next week to work with the kids further.
The middle school workouts provided an opportunity for coaches to talk to younger kids and establish a connection with the students during the swim lessons. The team visited Poe middle school on Sept. 28 and Oct. 21.
“It was great watching Coach Lucas and our senior athletes interact with the middle schoolers. They seemed to have a ton of fun and I’m very optimistic for the future of the team,” swim coach Matthew O’Neill said.
The group worked on diving jumps, discussing the strokes of swimming, exercises related to swimming, and tried to work in a fun game of relay tic tac toe at the end.
The lessons also gave AHS players time to reflect on their own careers and the importance of teaching their game to the next wave of athletes.
“As a senior who has played softball at a travel level since the age of nine, it was very encouraging for me to see younger children interested in learning and training in softball,” senior Sayde Pritt said.
“It feels as if softball is a dying sport at times, so seeing interest and being able to encourage kids to play softball was a fun and promising experience,” Pritt said.
AHS teams visiting local middle schools has become a great tradition for the Atoms, providing valuable experience for both the high school and middle school athletes and coaches.