Tualatin athletes share thoughts on support from students


Graphic by Claire Roach.

Victoria Gillard, Sports Editor

Tualatin High School has had incredible sports seasons so far this year, with many accomplishments and impressive athletic performances. Both our cheer and dance teams won second at state, and our cheer team also went on to win the USA national title. Our football team made it to the semifinals. Our women’s basketball team was undefeated all season headed into the playoffs and our men’s basketball team won the state championship against all odds, making them back-to-back reigning champions. These student athletes put in so much hard work and dedication for their teams and for the people watching, which is truly inspiring. 

The presence and support from a student section definitely has an impact on the athletes’ energy during their games. When a substantial number of students show up to a sporting event, you can feel the excitement and enthusiasm within the crowd and in the team’s energy and motivation to put on a great performance. Fans can also see the unification of our school as everyone is gathered into a section of the crowd, cheering on our team and calling out chants, which is powerful to witness. 

The Wolf decided to interview juniors Ethan Matsuoka (baseball), Alexa Mekkers (lacrosse) and Mabry Martin (volleyball and softball) to get some insight into what their games are like and their thoughts on the impact of having a student section. 


How many fans show up to your games?

Mekkers: Like 20-30, mostly just family of players on the team.

Martin: At our volleyball games, we have about 20 student fans that show up to our home games. 

Matsuoka: 20 or more people.


Does having a student section at your games impact your motivation and performance?

Martin: I think that a student section helps improve motivation for many people on the team; however, I think that it doesn’t make a huge difference as we have never had a good student section. 

Mekkers: It’s always fun to see friends and people I know at my games. I don’t think having a student section would change my motivation or how I perform, but it’s cool to see people other than parents watching our games. 


Does it make a difference when there are people supporting you at your games? 

Matsuoka: I feel like the environment is a lot more fun to play around. The competitiveness is at an all-time high, especially in a big game with a lot of fans.   


Do you feel that the student section shows up to other sports events over yours?

Mekkers: I do feel like the student section shows up more for other sports over ours, which is okay. There have been a couple groups of students at our games to come and cheer us on, but not groups as large as our student section.

Having a student section may not affect the performance of these athletes, but the added support and energy that comes when a student section is present is undeniable. This kind of support not only helps push the players and keep the energy up during their games, but it also makes the games more fun for everyone. Most students we spoke with agree that it is important to recognize and appreciate the hard work of all the athletes at Tualatin High School. In order to equally support all students, it is important that we bring the same energy to all teams at TuHS.