Intramurals are Back!

Intramurals are back at STA, and according to coach Caitlyn Kogge, they are better than ever.


by Olivia Cooper, Staff Writer

With finals looming next week, the stress of imminent due dates weigh heavily on junior Regan Becker’s shoulders; however, for twenty short minutes she forgets all of that. It’s Activity one, and her intramural basketball team is about to play. Intramural sports are back, and Becker and other students are overjoyed. Keep in mind, this is not the first school year intramural sports have been offered at STA; in fact they were introduced during the 2019-2020 school year. Coach and STA teacher Caitlyn Kogge is the main organizer of this intramural sports program and she has stated that there were a variety of factors that facilitated its quick end several years ago. “They [intramural sports] existed pre-COVID but they weren’t a thing that we did until COVID,” Kogge said. “ We tried them before and getting girls to show up and having enough people to play was spotty. So they ended up discontinuing them.” The decision to bring back intramural sports was made mainly because of the new schedule, particularly the reinstatement of Activity period. “We finally had a block of time where we could do them [intramurals], whereas before with our schedule, changing and everything and then all the COVID restrictions, there wasn’t really an opportunity for it,” Kogge said. Kogge feels that the students’ response to intramurals this year have been mainly positive, especially with the senior class. Kogge found that one of the main reasons for this is because none of the class levels have had the opportunity to experience and participate in intramurals before. As a result, student participation has been high. “None of the students that are here have had intramurals since they’ve been here,” Kogge said. “So it was like a clean slate and a way for us to structure it in a way that we thought would be effective and kind of set the foundation, like this is the expectation.” Another reason for the high student participation is the joy of simply playing a sport for fun, regardless of the outcome. Becker enjoys how participating has made her feel closer to her classmates and she encourages other students to participate as well. “I would encourage other people to join just because it is so much fun,” Becker said. “I have played sports my whole life and I grew really close with my teammates. It’s nice to have that environment where it’s not insanely cutthroat and you feel like you have to be competing with everyone and winning against everyone.” Kogge also believes that the ability to play intramural sports has many benefits for the student body. “We hit a certain point where we don’t have recess in schools anymore, and there’s not a lot of play,” Kogge said. “So it [intramural sports] gives us the opportunity to move our bodies in a meaningful way; whereas otherwise the only time we’re really doing that is going up and down the stairs. So it gives them [students] that physical outlet that they need.” Kogge feels that playing an intramural sport can also provide a much-needed mental break for students who find themselves stressed out by school and life. “It’s a good mental break from just studying and being on the grind all the time,” Kogge said. “It’s nice to be able to shut off that academic part and just allow all of those good hormone neurotransmitters to signal out so it’s good little dopamine and endorphins hit in the middle of the day.” Becker and Kogge both agree that participating in intramural sports is a great way to get involved at STA, whether it be playing, coaching, or even watching and cheering on your classmates. “Sports are really a bonding experience I think, just across the board,” Becker said. “It’s a really easy way to grow closer with your friends, and you don’t have to wait for it. It’s not a huge commitment. It’s just something that’s fun and light-hearted. The intramural basketball session began on November 4, and the playoff tournament will conclude today.