Fund-raiser pg 5 11-12-20


Raising Money
The Woodstock Academy field hockey team gathers around sophomore Joanna Lin as she does one of her 650 burpees to help raise money for the B Club at the school. Photo by Lauren Gagnon.

Traditionally, The Woodstock Academy field hockey team does its burpee challenge by itself, raising money for Breast Cancer Awareness.
But 2020 has been anything but traditional. The field hockey team decided with little in the way of competition on a regular basis, due to the pandemic shutting down athletics at numerous ECC schools, why not have a competition from within and, in the process, aid a cause from within.
The team invited both the boys’ and girls’ soccer team to join them in the burpee challenge event to benefit the B Club at Woodstock Academy. The B Club provides families, especially those within the Academy family, with financial support in dealing with long-term illnesses.
Several members of the field hockey team are a part of the B Club and many were well-acquainted with Wes Woronecki who hailed from Union.
Woronecki, who would have been a senior this year at Woodstock Academy, lost his 5-year battle with pediatric bone cancer in July.
“A lot of us were impacted by Wesley’s death so for us to be able to give back to someone else who is still battling cancer and to support B Club is amazing,” said senior field hockey captain Meg Preston.
Preston said the decision was made to invite the other two teams to help with fund-raising, especially since the school is learning virtually and there is little contact with others outside of athletics.
The effort raised more than $1,200 to date with more coming in.
It was also a little more fun with more involved.
“It was kind of cool to see and the cause for which it was for was tremendous. As soon as I mentioned it to the lads, they thought it was great,” said boys’ soccer coach Paul Rearden.
What he didn’t expect was the competitive nature of it until he got to the turf at the Bentley Athletic Complex.
“It was great to see the effort that they all put in,” Rearden said.
He anticipated the event to take 10 minutes of that day’s soccer practice.
The teams were still there an hour later, cheering on the efforts of a pair of sophomores, field hockey player Joanna Lin and Jack Marshall from boys’ soccer.
A burpee, according to field hockey coach Lauren Gagnon, is a jump up and then down into a point position and that motion is repeated. In most cases, a push up is included in the aerobic exercise but that wasn’t required in this event.
Student-athletes raised money based on either a sum per burpee or a flat donation. Normally, student-athletes do 25 to 30 and call it a day. Lin did 650.
“She’s a machine, super-determined, and was watching the boys who were still going and was determined not to quit,” Gagnon said.
“I think we were all shocked,” Preston said. “We just wanted to support her through it and prove that girls can do as many burpees as guys can.”
Lin said the mental determination is the big part. “If you tell yourself, ‘I can’t do it.’ You can’t do it. But if you mentally say to yourself that you can, your body goes numb and you keep on going,” Lin said. “I’ve never done 650 before. It was so tiring. My muscles were crying, but I pushed through it.”
Lin raised $325 for her efforts. Rearden said Marshall did around 700 burpees. Marshall also paid the price.
Rearden said he asked Marshall the next morning if he wanted to start in their 11 a.m. match against Windham Tech. “He said, ‘Come back to me in the second half.’ I think he went on for the last three minutes of the game,” Rearden said.
Marc Allard
Director of Sports Information
The Woodstock Academy


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