Exeter/Andover 2016

ea-football

Hey everyone!

This past weekend was one of my favorite days, Exeter/Andover, a Saturday where all of our sports teams play the teams of Phillips Academy, our rival school. The rivalry between Exeter and Andover is one of the longest running high school rivalries, which is pretty cool. E/A alternates where it’s at every year, this year it was at Andover.

Preparation for E/A starts on Wednesday, which is JV E/A. All of the JV teams play at whichever school isn’t holding the varsity competitions, which was here at Exeter this year. All the fall teams play Wednesday afternoon and tons of posters go up around campus reminding people to go to the games and cheer on their friends. Thursday is then class color day. Preps, or ninth graders, wear all white, Lowers (10th graders) wear gray, Uppers dress in black and Seniors get decked out in red. Friday is red day and everyone piles on as much red and Exeter clothing as they can. Every year, we get what are called psych packs in our post offices boxes. Each one has a red bandana, a red beaded necklace, and two temporary tattoos. This year and last year I managed to convince my friends to give me their necklaces, so I ended up with ten.

Our assembly on Friday was the pep assembly, which started off with a joint performance by Outkast and Precision, the two step teams on campus. Their performance was amazing and it was so fun to see the two groups perform together which doesn’t happen often. Next, the red bandits, who are the most spirited seniors teach a few of the cheers and then we watch the E/A video, which is produced by Reel Life Productions, our film club on campus. This year the video was  about a competition between two students to see who could make a fall varsity sport first. The underdog won and the video was filled with tons of fails and was a great way to get everyone laughing. After that, Principal McFarlane came out with a broom and started a “Sweep!” chant. After that, the seniors got to rush the stage and assembly was dismissed.

Friday night is the pep rally and E.A.R concert. Unfortunately this year the bonfire that usually starts before pep rally was canceled due to high winds. At pep rally all the dance groups get to perform, including Poms, our cheerleaders, ABS, the belly dance group, Imani, one of the hip-hop groups, BOA, which stands for Beat of Asia which is a Kpop dance group, and Lionettes, the jazz group. Each sports team also gets to come out and perform a skit, talk about their season and convince people to come to their games on Saturday. Boys cross country performed a Star Wars skit that was very funny and girls volleyball tried to find their biggest fan by quizzing people. Even though it was freezing out, pep rally was so much fun. After pep rally, I went off to the E.A.R concert. E.A.R stands for Exeter Association of Rock  and is one of the clubs on campus. Different bands and acts performed throughout the night, including a few people who performed original songs, an incredible cover of Hotel California by the Eagles, as well as an amazing Ray Charles cover.

Saturday morning I got on a bus to head to Andover and got there just after the start of boys soccer, who tied 0-0. Next was field hockey who lost 2-0. Girls volleyball was my favorite game of the day, and the only one I saw start to finish. The girls pulled off a win in 5 sets and storming the volleyball court was one of the most exciting parts of the day. After volleyball was girls soccer who fought bravely but lost 2-1. The day ended with football, which we lost 16-7 However, even though it wasn’t the closest game, both sides were very energetic and were rooting for their team up until the last few seconds. I screamed so much throughout the day that I got home that night with a very sore throat and very little voice. We got really lucky with the weather. It was mid to high 40’s the entire day, which beats last year, when it snowed during girls soccer. That night was Soule Tea, a dance hosted by Soule Hall, a boys dorm on campus. The dance was very fun, with a great dj and lots of good snacks.

All in all, it was an amazing day and I’m already looking forward to do it all over again in the winter!

-Ingrid

JV Softball

Hey guys!

Recently here in Exeter, we’ve been having some amazing weather which has made playing softball so much better. I play for the JV softball team here at Exeter and I’ve had so much fun with the team so far this season. I was in Prep Program, which is basically a freshman gym class that is much more fun and more intense, during the fall and winter terms, so this is my first team and first competitive sport here at Exeter.

The JV team didn’t make cuts this year, so we have 17 people, which is pretty big for a softball team. The girls on the team are some of the funniest people I’ve ever met and practice is one of my favorite parts of every day. We practice four days a week (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday) and we have games on Wed. and Sat. We also do special workouts twice a week with the strength and conditioning coach, Coach Barboza, and do strength and conditioning or speed training.

The team is super close and it’s so nice to have teammates who are so supportive and really like taking care of each other. On Saturday of last week, one of our catchers brought us all brownies because we won our first game a few days before. We’ve also had brownie-cookie-muffin combos brought to practice to celebrate a birthday as well. We have so many inside jokes and we always try to hang out, even if it’s only some of us which I think just makes us even closer, both on and off the field. This team is so kind to one another and we’re kind of like our own little family which is awesome, especially as we get to cheer each other on throughout the rest of our season.

Ingrid Softball 1

I’m so glad to be playing both for the school and on this team because it’s been one of my favorite experiences so far this year. I highly recommend trying out for a sport here at Exeter, no matter what level you are. There are girls on my team who have played for years and some who had never played until this year and the same goes for other sports teams on campus. There’s something really special about having teammates and it’s something that I think helps make Exeter such an amazing community. Sports teams help mix people from different dorms, countries, grades and helps bring together some really interesting and fun people.

Ingrid Softball 2

Also, the Preps have been playing Elimination (a.k.a. Survivor or Assassin) this week, which has made for some really crazy stories, and a lot of running around campus in a panic. Unfortunately, I was eliminated on day 1 but I think it’s even more fun now to try and save people or help others eliminate their targets.

Why I Chose Exeter

One of my driving decisions to attend Exeter was the sports. I play many sports including Varsity Volleyball, JV Soccer, and JV Basketball. I love the feeling of competition and the strive to become a better athlete. The Academy has a long history of successful seasons.12244686_836265763138053_8535953735163307535_o.jpg This is due to the excellent coaching staff as well as the motivated players. The volleyball coach here – Coach Shang – is hands down the best coach I’be ever had. What amazes me is how he knows what exactly to do to get us to understand. He analyzes every player and breaks down the objective for them, making sure they understand what to do exactly. Within a week my volleyball skill has skyrocketed. Let’s not forget about the athletic trainers. The trainers here are amazing. They cater to specific sports and are experts in their fields. They are very accessible and easy to talk to. You can tell your safety is their number one priority. Mr. Hamel is my usual trainer, as he deals specifically with basketball and volleyball. I stop by quite often to ice and he’s always there if I have any questions or if I want to chat. Last but not least, my teammates. On and off the courts, it’s great being with these guys. On the volleyball court we are fierce competitors, protecting our New England Champions Title. In practice I’m always cheered up when I make a mistake by our seniors. They notice I beat myself, and tell me to not worry about and just do better next time. Off the court we just chill at the dining hall or our dorms. Even if I need help on my homework, someone on the team’s got me. Coming from a sport-oriented schools; great coaches, trainers, and teammates, this is why I chose Exeter.  524243_10205416599267496_8399597361949447801_n.jpg

Why I Chose Exeter

SpiritI don’t want this to be another cliché post about how I chose my school because of the community. In fact, every school is a community, no matter what kind of community it may be. But what really distinguishes Exeter is what makes up this special – warm, inspiring, diverse, and vibrant – community. At Exeter, you take the unlimited opportunities it offers to be your best self; whoever that may be, and whatever that may take. And that is why I chose Exeter; the opportunity it offers to try to be my best self.

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Meet the squash team. As you can probably tell from the photo, we are the most fun-loving, tight-knit, and hilarious team at Exeter. I started playing squash long before I came to Exeter. My coaches, Ms. Carbonell, Coach Shang, and Freddie has helped me improve so much over the past two seasons. My fellow teammates, from Elle and Anisha (who were seniors last year) to Alison and Meghana who are on the novice team this year, have helped me become a better teammate.

Exeter has taught me that squash is not just an individual sport. All my teammates, no matter which place they are at on the ladder, cheer me on and motivate me to give my 100% on every single practice and match. When it’s a two-all match score, Continue reading

Winter is Here

Once I have to dig out my boots and jacket from the back of my closet, I realize the inevitable: winter is here. Exeter just had its first snow, only a couple of inches, but as usual, it will likely have a lot more! Winter is one of the most interesting terms at Exeter. I have found that, while it is almost always dark out and you cannot play around outside as much, it is a term where I get to know my friends well and my grades skyrocket!

I guess since it’s so cold out, we don’t have as much to do as Exonians, so we hang out in the dorms, in grill, get our work done, and in general have a rather laid-back term. The Student Activities Office also does a great job of scheduling a lot of fun events for winter weekends, so that students don’t get bored.

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Winter also means squash season! I first learned squash at Exeter, and this year I am playing around the mid-rankings of varsity- it is really exciting. Even though I have played tennis for much longer, I like the two sports equally, since squash is so fun. Below you can see a photo of me gearing up to hit a serve. This was in a match against Milton this Saturday. I luckily won my match, but we were narrowly defeated 4-3.

EXETER/andover

Hey guys,

As you might already know, the annual Exeter/Andover games were last weekend. We have a friendly but intense rivalry with the school with the same name fifty miles to the south, and E/A weekend is always a time for school spirit and bonding, as well as for favorite alumni to return to campus.

When E/A takes place in Andover, Exeter provides buses so that the entire school can come support the teams. There are also tons of traditions associated with E/A – four-year seniors get to wear decorative kilts with school colors, first-year alumni flock back to Exeter in droves to catch up with their friends after their first term of college, and Pep Rally and Pep Assembly the Friday before the games are always memorable occasions. Exeter didn’t fair so well this year, winning in girl’s volleyball, tying a close game in boy’s soccer, and losing a hard fought and well-attended football game by just one point, 13-12, but even in the years when our sports teams don’t do as well as we would hope, the camaraderie fostered by the E/A spirit make sure it’s always a fun time of year. Check me out cheering on the football team last weekend in the picture below – and a special shoutout to head blogger Rachel in the bottom right-hand corner of the picture! I’ll also be uploading some footage of Exeter’s newest club, a blend of fire-dancing, martial arts and gymnastics called Illumninosity and started by my good friend Kenny Berger ’15, so be sure to look out for that.

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See you soon,

Zach

E/A in a week!

Kevins volleyball team pic

Hey guys! The leaves have stopped changing, and have begun to break off bare tree branches, marking the end of a very busy fall term.

Kevins bench in front of library

Halloween just passed, and we had a wonderful costume contest, hosted by the lovely Student Council. Exeter/Andover games are in just a week, and I’m pumped for the girls varsity volleyball game, since I’m the manager. The girls have had a terrific season so far, making it 11-1, losing only to the defending champions Choate by two points. I’m super proud of them, and I can’t wait for them to beat Andover!

Spring is in the air

Rex tennisHey Everybody!

Although we passed through many long and chilly months, the warm weather is finally here! It reached 80 degrees today, and all over campus you can see people sunbathing, tossing the frisbee, relaxing in inflatable mini pools, or just relaxing on the quad. One of my more favorite aspects of spring is that it is tennis season once again! I have played tennis for six years (it is my main sport), and so I couldn’t wait for our first matches to come around. Not only has our performance this year been fantastic (we have lost only one match and our #1 was injured), but it is an incredible group that I love spending time with.

Whenever we have to travel three hours to some far away school, or come back to campus at 9 PM after a late match, people always wonder why I do it. But honestly, those lengthy bus rides and never ending matches are some of the fondest memories I have of this place.  Next week we are heading to the New England Championships, where we will likely be seeded first or second; even if it would be nice to win, I am most excited to spend a whole weekend with my team mates

(In the photo you can see senior and co-captain Charlie Boyd, on the left, and me, as we defeated Deerfield in a doubles match).