Beating the streak

Spartan athletes maintain a positive attitude even when results have not been going your way


Paige Fann

The football team watches from the sidelines during its victory over Francis Howell North on Sept. 28. The win snapped a five-game losing streak for the team.

Marcus Falcomata, Staff reporter

Friday, Sept. 28. The air is much colder than it has been since spring as the Spartans take the field against Howell North, their Homecoming opponent. Five games are under the Spartan’s belt, all losses, but this one feels different. The white-out crowd is filled with a new energy as the Knights kicked off the game.

Athletes have losing streaks. Dealing with many losses requires the mental fortitude to forget what has already happened and a constant knowledge that it does not matter.  

A prime example of a team on a losing streak at Central was seen early on in the Varsity football season. The Spartans went to 0-5, with losses to Fort Zumwalt East, Fort Zumwalt South, O’Fallon, Howell, and Holt. The football team was becoming disheartened after coming halfway through the season with no ticks in the win column. Still they were able to find some optimism according to senior Jaccob Schroeder.

I think we have a good attitude going into the game right now because it’s a big game, homecoming,” said Schroeder. “I think we all like truly believe we have a legitimate chance.”

Because of the strength of the opponent, and the importance of the game, the Spartan football program was buzzing with confidence. As they came rushing through the banner onto the sideline, emotions pouring out all over the field, there was a complete sense of belief in every soul at Don Muench Memorial Stadium that the Spartans would win the game.

Senior Volleyball player Hannah Goestenkoers remembers a time when she was in the same position.

“My freshman year, we went on a six-game losing streak. And that was pretty rough, going into high school and losing,” said Goestenkoers. “So It was scary. I wasn’t sure if we were ever going to win.”

Goestenkoers recalls the effect the streak had on the Central volleyball players in 2015, and how damaging such a long drawn out streak was to their lives on and off the court.

“We were getting stressed out, and so then I was getting stressed out. So we were all panicked and we weren’t really playing as a team. It was just overall stressful,” Goestenkoers said. “[To end the streak we] got a really big win against a big rival and that really lit a spark. The team began to play together and then we went on a winning streak.”
From this experience Goestenkoers knows that a positive attitude adjustment may be the only thing that can turn a losing streak around.

“The attitude that is required to end a losing streak is one of positivity and optimism because if you like think you’re gonna win, then you always like play better as a team. But if you’re negative then things can go bad.”

Walking into the locker room, the players are elated about their first half performance, winning 18-6, in a position they have seldom been in all season. In the first three games of the season, the spartans had held leads, but none as substantial as this. With the defense firing on all cylinders and no sign of any offensive production from the Knights, it was evident that it would take a miracle for anything less than the first victory of the season for Central.

A leader on the softball team, Senior Jordan Floyd, talks about a losing streak her team is on right now.

Last week we lost two games, then this week we lost to Lafayette and then we just lost to Zumwalt West and Holt,” said Floyd, “right now it kind of brings everyone’s mood down, but we just have to keep pushing, especially since the end of the season is so soon.”
Even in a rough rut like this one, Floyd knows that any given game could be the end of a bad streak and the beginning of a new one.  

“You can just win any game, so it’s awful. Even if you lose, there’re always games [where] you can pick up a win and get that momentum going.”

If teams have a voice of positive leadership like Floyd, they can bounce back from anything in a big way. Since Floyd’s comments on their losing streak, the Spartans picked up a big win, 18-6 over Fort Zumwalt South. Just prior to Floyd’s comments, Spartan Varsity softball went on a seven game winning streak, which shows just how turbulent a season can be, and just how greatly momentum can affect results.

In the second half, the defense is prepared for anything the knights can throw at them, and viciously makes every extra yard a struggle. The knights fail to put up any points in the second half after many successive turnovers. By the time the final whistle blows, Adam Lewis has 102 recieving yards to add to his 453 on the season. The students storm the field, in the same fashion as 2013 after Ben Burn’s game-winning field goal against Timberland, FHC’s most recent Homecoming win.

Perhaps the Spartans heard advice like that given by Floyd, and were able to put five games behind them to focus on what they can accomplish in one game.

“You just need to be positive and kind of forget what happened in the past, and realize that you have the ability to play the game you know how to play.”