Senior Night Celebrated Early Due to COVID Uncertainty

By Shailey Klein

Due to COVID-19, this school year looks extremely different for everyone in the Oak Hall community. Specifically, seniors are not going to get the senior year they’ve envisioned since their elementary school days. In order to give the student-athletes a sense of normalcy, the athletic department is honoring seniors early in the season this year, in order to guarantee they will not miss out on their long-awaited senior night. Senior night is a special event where the seniors’ highlights and achievements are recognized. Surrounded by coaches, family and friends, the seniors get to reflect on their careers in the sport and contributions to Oak Hall. The seniors on the football team were recognized at halftime of their season opener Sept. 4. The cross country team honored its seniors following the varsity races at the Florida Horse Park in Ocala on Sept. 5. Finally, the Varsity Volleyball team’s seniors were honored Sept. 14 before the second home game against Countryside Christian. A date for senior recognition for swimming and diving, and golf has yet to be determined. 

Cross Country Seniors:

Gabby Aulisio
Number of years running for Oak Hall: 2
Favorite Cross Country Memory: Singing on long runs.
Will you continue to run in college? I will hopefully run for a club team in college.
Most significant lesson running has taught you? I learned that pain is temporary. Even when something is hard, it pays off to push through and give it your best effort.
Coach Mac’s best words of advice: “Relax the shoulders. Arms! Now go catch that girl.”

Harrison Grooms
Number of years running for Oak Hall: 7
Favorite Cross Country Memory: The night before our State Championship Meet, the varsity girls team always sits in a circle to reflect on the season and what we will each bring to the State Championship course. In this circle, we all share tears, laughter, and excitement for what is to come during our final meet of the season.
Will you continue to run in college? I hope to run on a team in college. However, if that’s not a possibility, then I will definitely continue running on my own for fun.
Most significant lesson running has taught you? No amount of pain is worth letting your team down.
Coach Mac’s best words of advice: “Be patient and trust the process.”

Miles Kelleher
Number of years running for Oak Hall: 4
Favorite Cross Country Memory: Carb loading with the team.
Will you continue to run in college? Nope.
Most significant lesson running has taught you? Running has taught me dedication and commitment through many early morning workouts and meets that require a 100 percent effort every day.
Coach Mac’s best words of advice: “Run Fast.” Mrs. Mac: “Don’t suck.”

Ally Means
Number of years running for Oak Hall: 7
Favorite Cross Country Memory: When we told Circle Christian I was a guy on the guys team or when the bus lost A/C on the way back from regionals and no one had water.
Will you continue to run in college? Probably not.
Most significant lesson running has taught you? No pain, no gain.
Coach Mac’s best words of advice: “Whoever wants it more is going to win.”

Austin Montini
Number of years running for Oak Hall: 7
Favorite Cross Country Memory: Winning the Cross Country State Championship last year and leading the team to a Runner-Up finish.
Will you continue to run in college? Yes
Most significant lesson running has taught you? Running has taught me how to balance many activities at once as well as how to give it everything I’ve got and accept the result.
Coach Mac’s best words of advice: “Run fast.”

Football Seniors:

Jake Gill
Jersey: #18
Number of years playing football for Oak Hall: 3
Favorite Football Memory: Comeback win vs. St. Joes last year.
Will you continue to play in college? No.
Most significant lesson football has taught you? Hydrate.
Coach RJ’s best words of advice: “Eyes through the thighs, wrap, squeeze, and roll”.

Andrew Pickens
Jersey: #11
Number of years playing football for Oak Hall: 4
Favorite Football Memory: Beating St Joe’s 11th grade year.
Will you continue to play in college? Planning on it.
Most significant lesson football has taught you? Being a “me guy” doesn’t work. you have to be unselfish in order to succeed in this world.
Coach RJ’s best words of advice: “Treat your team like family.”

Brian Storey
Jersey: #75
Number of years playing football for Oak Hall: 6
Favorite Football Memory: Hangin with the bois in the coop.
Will you continue to play in college? No.
Most significant lesson football has taught you? How to handle and overcome adversity. 
Coach RJ’s best words of advice: “Eyes through the thighs, wrap, squeeze, and roll”.

Volleyball Seniors:

Shailey Klein
Jersey: #6
Number of years playing volleyball for Oak Hall: 4
Favorite Volleyball Memory: Beating undefeated, defending state champion Bell on their home court my junior year.
Will you continue to play in college? Possibly for a club team or intramural.
Most significant lesson volleyball has taught you? Volleyball has taught me how to be an effective leader and be a role model on and off the court that my teammates can look up to. 
Coach Perry McDonald’s best advice: He has elevated my game to a whole new level mentally. He’s taught me so much as a setter when it comes to spreading the floor, being deceptive, and remaining consistent. 

Sophie Miller
Jersey: #1
Number of years playing volleyball for Oak Hall: 7
Favorite Volleyball Memory: Trying to find then senior Ayanna Rollins in a strip mall because she needed to pee and then cramming back into the white bus for two more hours.
Will you continue to play in college? I will hopefully continue playing at either the club or intramural level.
Most significant lesson volleyball has taught you? Volleyball has taught me that no matter what happens in the past, we can’t dwell on it. Coach J [Jessica Dennis] used to always say we need to play with a “next ball” mentality. This same mindset carries into life off of the court in that we need to recognize our past mistakes but use them to better ourselves and keep improving.
Coach Perry McDonald’s best words of advice: “Carpe diem.” With such an unconventional senior season, it is super important to enjoy and give it your all every practice or game because it could be our last.

Golf Senior:

Elle Storoe
Number of years playing golf for Oak Hall: 7
Favorite Golf Memory: My favorite golf memory is riding on the bus with my team listening to music, eating bagels, and getting excited for the match.
Will you continue to play in college? I will continue to play golf in college.
Most significant lesson golf has taught you: The most significant lesson golf has taught me it to play one shot at a time, just like life, one day at a time.
Coach Reger’s best words of advice: “Live to play bad another day”.

Swimming Seniors:

Jenna Poppell
Number of years swimming for Oak Hall: 4 years
Favorite Swimming Memory: Bus rides to the meets.
Will you continue to swim in college? No.
Most significant lesson swim has taught you: The value of being on a team.
Coach Quinn’s best words of advice: “It is important to be on time”.

Ani Gogineni
Number of years swimming for Oak Hall: 3
Favorite Swimming Memory: Beating the GHS relay at districts.
Will you continue to swim in college? Hopefully Division-III swimming; depends on where I go.
Most significant lesson swim has taught you: Pushing through pain is gratifying.
Coach Quinn’s best words of advice: “Don’t underestimate yourself.”

Ben Moraski
Number of years swimming for Oak Hall: 1
Favorite Swimming Memory: Belly flopping when learning how to start.
Will you continue to swim in college? I will not continue to swim in college.
Most significant lesson swim has taught you: Pace yourself.
Coach Quinn’s best words of advice: “Make sure to breathe.”

Shayne Ryan
Number of years swimming for Oak Hall: 1
Favorite Swimming Memory: Don’t have one yet.
Will you continue to swim in college? No.
Most significant lesson swim has taught you: Push yourself.
Coach Quinn’s best words of advice: “Join swim.”

Julian Sanchez
Number of years swimming for Oak Hall: 1
Favorite Swimming Memory: Probably watching Shayne drown.
Will you continue to swim in college? I won’t swim in college.
Most significant lesson swim has taught you: Swim has taught me when life gets tough you gotta keep swimming.
Coach Quinn’s best words of advice: “Swim fast.”

Bowen Wilcox
Number of years swimming for Oak Hall: 6
Favorite Swimming Memory: Everyone falling off the blocks at a meet because one kid went early.
Will you continue to swim in college? I will probably continue to swim in college.
Most significant lesson swim has taught you: Swim has taught me that if I try to breathe a foot before the wall, my face is gonna hurt real soon.
Coach Quinn’s best words of advice: “Swim like an Eagle!”

Football Cheerleading Seniors:

Megan Whittel
Number of years cheering for Oak Hall: 3
Favorite cheer memory: Asking the crowd to cheer with us at a basketball game and then actually doing it!
Will you continue to cheer in college? No.
Most significant lesson cheer has taught you: Always smile and then you’ll look like you know what you’re doing!
Coach Kelley’s best words of advice: “All in every day, all out every time.” 

Kathryn Wishart:
Number of years cheering for Oak Hall: 7
Favorite cheer memory: Watching the team compete at State in 2020.
Will you continue to cheer in college? No.
Most significant lesson cheer has taught you: You can always be better at something.
Coach Kelley’s best words of advice: “All in everyday, all out every time.”

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