Freshman Bridget Cozzi keeps hope alive by playing sports

By Vivian Kaleta, Staff Writer

Freshman Bridget Cozzi reminds everyone that it is okay to feel nervous and that nobody is alone during this uncertain time.

Bridget Cozzi, a freshman at Walter Payton, is a sports enthusiast. You can see her on the court playing basketball and volleyball, outside playing softball and cross country, or in the dance studio. She has been on the Payton cross country team and is currently trying out for the Payton basketball team. She plans on trying out for the Payton softball team and volleyball team in the future. 

From a young age, Cozzi has always been into sports as she has played a variety of them for many years. She dreamed of being able to play sports in high school. Unfortunately, COVID-19 changed the idea of a normal high school sports experience. Cozzi, along with many other high school basketball players, was devastated upon knowing that her season would be cut short. In addition to that, COVID-19 safety precautions made team practices difficult at times. Despite these circumstances, Cozzi stays optimistic and said that participating in Payton sports this year can still “bring a little light in your days” and “having a season at all is better than nothing.” She said that Payton athletics has given her a chance to meet new friends, make great memories, and has been overall one of the greatest experiences of her freshman year. “I am willing to power through any guidelines to play the sport that I love,” she said. Nothing can take away the sense of feeling free that Cozzi experiences while playing sports. When Cozzi is playing she said she is “pushing all online school worries away.” Focusing on taking advantage of all the sports opportunities has helped Cozzi achieve making “the best of this strange time.” 

As well as sharing her experiences, Cozzi also has some advice to any Payton students, especially freshmen, who are hesitant about joining a sports team. Cozzi noted that it could feel stressful, especially at tryouts, but overall said, “to just go for it.” 

“You got this!” she said. “Just put in the effort, be loud, don’t be afraid to put yourself out there, make friends, and just enjoy yourself because high school doesn’t last forever and this is already a strange year, so why not make the best of it?” 

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