Panther athletes locking in


Evan James '23

3 Elder Panthers Locking In

As the new year begins, many Panther athletes sports seasons also start. We have Football, Soccer, Golf, and Cross Country to start the off the school year in the fall. We see all these athletes perform and show off their skills, but what we don’t see is what goes on before their game, match, or meet.

What I will explore in this story is how Elder Panther athletes lock in before they compete in their sport and what they do to stay focused. I will talk to three different athletes from three different sports to see how they prepare. The athletes will be Josiah Jenkins (Soccer), Andrew Onorato (Football), and Tommy Weber (Cross Country).

How do you lock in?

Senior cross country runner Tommy Weber (courtesy Eldercc twitter)

The first question I asked these three athletes was: How do you lock in? First, we will look into senior Cross country runner Tommy Weber. Weber has been running cross country for five years and is a star runner here at Elder.

I asked him how he likes to lock in before meets and he said that he likes to take a look at the course and make plans for when he will pass people. He also talked about how he plans to be one of the runners up in the front leading the pack. Weber said, “I tell myself that I am the best to try to get myself ready to be in the front.” Obviously, this works well for weber.

The next athlete I asked the same question was senior soccer player Josiah Jenkins. When I asked Jenkins how he likes to get locked in he said that he likes to get his mind right and stay focused. He also likes to listen to music before his soccer games.

I then asked Jenkins what his go to song is before a game and he responded with “my go to song is usually ‘Power’ by Kanye.” From how it sounds Jenkins likes to get jacked before games

Senior offensive lineman Andrew Onorato (courtesy

Elder football’s center, Andrew Onorato, has been playing Elder football for all four years of high school. He was asked last year to play on the O-line at whopping 180 pounds and Glady said yes. He also didn’t have a choice. He now weighs about 220.

When I asked Onorato what he does to get locked in before games, he explained that music is his way to go. Onorato said “The one song I like to go with before games is ‘Hells Bells’ by ACDC.” His music gets him in his right mind and absolutely jazzed up so he’s ready to get after it on the field.

What are your biggest worries?

Weber loves to stay focused before his meets but there are always some worries in the back of his mind. When you think of a Cross country runners worries before games you might not think they are that big or important, but Weber lets us know that there are big worries before meets.

When I asked Weber what his biggest worries are he responded with, “I’m most worried about the pain of the race and letting the team down.” Weber does not let down very much. He also fears of cramping in the middle of the race and ruining his run.

Senior soccer Cy Jenkins (courtesy Instagram @naninanisports )

As jacked as Jenkins gets before his soccer games, he still has his worries. These are worries Kanye can’t even take care of. Jenkins fears that he will mess up and give the other team a goal from a mistake he makes. Jenkins said, “I don’t want to turn the ball over leading to the other team scoring and I don’t want to be the person that doesn’t make it back on defense quick enough.” Jenkins plans to have a successful soccer team and have no mistakes.

Andrew Onorato’s biggest worries as a center are pretty much what any player’s worries would be. He fears that he may send a ball over the quarterback’s head or even under the quarterback. Onorato also worries about not making the right block or doing a play wrong. “I’m most worried having a bad play that leads to a play for loss or even a turnover,” Onorato said. Onorato is doing good so far and continues to play a key role on the Panthers O-line.

Now that these fall sports have kicked off these athletes are looking for ways to get better and stay healthy. These three seniors are looking to finish off their seasons with a success but in order to do that they need to stay locked in.