Interscholastic Athletics and Physical Education

Interscholastic Athletics and Physical Education

“The commitment, dedication, and sacrifice that it takes to play a collegiate sport make it, at times, a grueling process that few are willing to endure. Those who do, though, know the reward and fulfillment that comes from devoting oneself to a team with a unified purpose and common goals. I think one would be hard-pressed to find a Park athlete, current or former, who has not been on a team that experienced unanticipated success as a result of unity, hard work, and dedication. That’s what athletics is all about, and for me that understanding began at Park.”

— Jonathan Hettleman ’10, baseball, basketball, and soccer
Johns Hopkins University ’14. Varsity baseball captain, Academic All-District, All Centennial Conference, Centennial Conference’s inaugural Scholar Athlete of the Year, Academic All-America Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship, 2014, Vietnam

Program Design and Philosophy

Interscholastic Athletics

From Grade 4 in Lower School, through Middle School, and competitive varsity level teams in the Upper School, Park emphasizes a balanced approach. We teach fundamental athletic skills, conditioning and fitness, game strategy, and the lifelong skills of perseverance, commitment to a common goal, overcoming adversity, and winning with humility and integrity. Led by two full-time athletic directors for male and female sports, our teacher-coaches build personal relationships with their student athletes that mirror the values, habits of mind, and character nurtured in the classroom.

We value both participation and a competitive spirit. In the Lower School and Middle School, all students who wish to come out for a team are included and receive playing time. Beginning in the eighth grade, and increasing each year though junior varsity and varsity levels, coaches encourage all players, but skilled and dedicated athletes receive the majority of the playing time. It is our goal to field competitive teams and win our share of games, play-off victories, and championships. Both boys and girls play in highly competitive leagues, the MIAA and IAAM respectively.

Physical Education 

Park’s comprehensive physical education program is offered to Lower and Middle School students. In Upper School, students choose between participation in interscholastic athletics and physical education electives, including outdoor education, ultimate frisbee, climbing wall, yoga, and fitness and strength training.

The mission of the Physical Education Program is to provide students with the basic foundation of motor and manipulative skills, an understanding of the importance of physical fitness and sport, and the opportunity to develop effective personal and social skills. Students will be provided the opportunity and information necessary to make decisions about physical activity for their personal challenge, enjoyment, health, self-expression, and social interaction. Our goal is to promote a positive learning environment that meets the needs and abilities of all students and encourages them to maintain a physically active lifestyle.

High Five on the field

Interscholastic Athletics

Upper School

Fall: Boys’ Cross Country (V), Girls’ Cross Country (V), Boys’ Soccer (JV, V), Field Hockey (JV, V), Girls’ Soccer (JV, V), Girls’ Tennis (JV, V)

Winter: Boys’ Basketball (Fresh/Soph, JV, V), Girls’ Basketball (JV, V), Girls’ Indoor Soccer (V), Coed Squash (JV, V)

Spring: Baseball (V), Softball (V), Boys’ Lacrosse (V), Girls’ Lacrosse (JV, V), Boys’ Tennis (JV, V)

Participation 

• 65% of Upper School students participate in interscholastic athletics.

Middle School

(1-3 teams per sport, depending on participation)

Fall: Coed Cross Country, Boys’ Soccer, Field Hockey, Girls’ Soccer 

Winter: Boys’ Basketball, Girls’ Basketball, Coed Squash

Spring: Baseball, Boys’ Lacrosse, Girls’ Lacrosse, Softball, Coed Tennis

Lower School

Grades 4 and 5 

(1 team per sport)

Fall: Boys’ Soccer, Field Hockey

Winter: Girls’ Soccer

Spring: Boys’ Lacrosse, Girls’ Lacrosse

25 teachers serve as athletic coaches

huddle on the field

Team Accomplishments 2006–2015

Boys’ Baseball: B-Conference Varsity Champions (2010), Varsity Finals (2006, 2007)

Boys’ Basketball: C-Conference Varsity Champions (2006),Varsity Semi-finals (2008, 2010, 2011, 2012), JV Champions (2012, 2013, 2014), JV Finals (2008, 2015), JV Semi-finals (2007), Freshman/ Sophomore B-Conference Champions (2009)

Boys’ Lacrosse: B-Conference Varsity Finals (2007, 2015),Varsity Semi-finals (2015), JV Semi- finals (2008)

Boys’ Soccer: B-Conference Varsity Semi-finals (2007), JV B-Conference Finals (2013)

Girls’ Basketball: C-Conference Varsity Finals (2008, 2009, 2010), Varsity Semi-finals (2005, 2006), JV Finals (2015)

Girls’ Indoor Soccer: B-Conference Varsity Champions (2013), Varsity Finals (2011, 2012, 2015), Varsity Semi- finals (2010, 2013, 2014)

Girls’ Lacrosse: B-Conference Varsity Champions (2006, 2009, 2010, 2013), Varsity Finals (2008), Varsity Semi-finals (2007, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015) 

Girls’ Soccer: B-Conference Varsity Finals (2009, 2012), Varsity Semi-finals (2010)

Girls’ Softball: C-Conference Varsity Champions (2009), Varsity Finals (2006, 2010)

the pitch

Individual Accomplishments 20062015

Boys: 95 athletes selected to MIAA All-Conference Teams

Girls: 117 athletes selected to IAAM All-Conference Teams:
(2010) 1 named to U.S. Lacrosse All-America First Team; 1 named to U.S. All-America Honorable Mention; 14 named to U.S. Lacrosse Academic All-America Team (2010–2015)

Athletic Director: Ridge Diven, MIAA Athletic Director of the Year (2011), Robin Cardin Lowe ’84, IAAM Athletic Director of the Year (2014)

“I look back at my career in Park athletics as fondly as I do my college career, if not more so. The feeling of winning not one but two lacrosse championships and being on a team with many of my close friends was one that is hard to top. On the other hand, losing the conference basketball championship and learning how to feel proud of what we’d accomplished that season despite the outcome was an experience that taught me more than I realized at the time but served me well during my college athletic career. Playing sports at Park taught me how to lose with pride and win with poise, and those experiences are ones that I will never forget.”

— Adrienne Tarver ’10, basketball, lacrosse, and soccer
Yale University ’14, Varsity lacrosse captain, All-Ivy Selection

Lower School Athletics

Athletic Facilities

State-of-the-Art Athletic Center

42,000 square feet, opened in the fall of 2001 • 3 competition-length basketball courts • 2,300-square-foot fitness center with aerobic and cardio machines, circuit training, and free weights • Athletic trainer’s room with whirlpool and treatment tables • Home and visiting team locker rooms • 8-lane swimming pool, training pool for summer camp • 2 additional competition-length basketball courts in the Blaustein Gymnasiums

Playing Fields

5 fields on main campus for field hockey, soccer, and lacrosse, including the new, state-of-the-art AstroTurf field

4 fields on Sugar Campus in Greenspring Valley for baseball, softball, lacrosse, and soccer (5-minute ride from main campus) 

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