The following article appeared in the March, 2012, volume 100, issue 3 edition of The Columbian, the student newspaper of Columbia High School.
By David Ferruggiaro - Sports Editor
Page Designer – Matthew Michaels, junior
In the world of sports, the top athletes always shine when the pressure is greatest.
When their teammates rely on these players to step up and make a big play when it counts, they perform at the highest level. Despite differences in sport and position, these athletes all share one thing in common: a dedicated work ethic.
The time and effort they put in during the off-season is often overlooked by their in-season performance, however, the off-season workouts and training are what makes them the best.
Jimmy Murphy, ’12, is a star pitcher for the Columbia High School varsity baseball team.
As a sophomore on the varsity team in 2010, Murphy was 5-0 with a 1.35 earned run average. But his success did not come easily. Murphy spent countless hours in the weight room as well as working out on the baseball field.
With this year’s baseball season already underway, Murphy’s efforts this past winter will be put on display.
As a member of East Side Fitness in Maplewood, Murphy goes to the gym twice a day:once before school, and once after. He uses the time in the morning to run and increase his fitness while in the afternoon he focuses on strength training.
“When I lift, I try to work out my entire body. As a pitcher, my legs are just as important as my arm,” Murphy explained.
However, strength training alone is not enough. Murphy and other members of the CHS baseball team began working out at Frozen Ropes, an indoor baseball training facility in Union, New Jersey, on the first Sunday of the new year.
“I go there every Sunday to hit and throw a bullpen session with my pitching coach,” Murphy said.
As Murphy prepared for the 2012 baseball season, Kaitlin Kling, ’12, also worked out to get ready for the CHS softball season.
Kling began workouts at the Sports University training facility in Fairfield, New Jersey, in December, 2011. She and other members of the CHS softball team practice every Sunday morning from 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.
There, Kling and her teammates participate in agility training, fielding drills, and batting practice.
As a catcher, Kling has also been training with the pitchers on the team,
including Emily Schnorr, ’13. “On Sunday afternoons, I catch for [Schnorr’s] pitching lessons for an hour and a half,” Kling said.
This offseason training has led to great results for both Murphy and Kling as they have both helped their respective teams compete throughout their high school careers.
Other CHS athletes have also been training each week to prepare for the upcoming spring sports season.
Many members of the CHS baseball team take advantage of their time
after school to participate in strength training in the CHS weight room.
Both the boys and girls lacrosse players are also working hard to prepare for the season, practicing at the Indoor Sports Pavilion (ISP) in Randolph, New Jersey.
As the spring sports teams began practicing last week, the results of each athlete’s offseason training will be put to the test.