Very Superstitious

The writing’s on the wall for some B-A athletes and their routines


Julia Johnson

Some of Bellwood-Antis’s athletes are bound by their superstitious natures.

Olivia Hess, Staff Writer

Many high school athletes think that the difference between a win and a loss in their sport could come down to whether or not they wear the same socks, listen to the same song, or eat the same food as they did another time before. 

For good luck on a larger scale, Michael Jordan had to wear blue UNC shorts under his Bulls uniform, and golfer Tiger Woods always wears red shirts while competing on Sundays.

These repeated behaviors are based on a belief that they will affect the outcome of a given situation or bring good favor. The term most widely used is superstition

People can have things they do to prepare themselves for games or competitions. But, I don’t think there are things that make them play better.

— Addy Turek

Superstitions Improve Performance

Some of B-A’s student athletes have a firm belief that their superstitions allow them to perform better in their games. One member of the golf team, Miranda Tornatore, has a superstition about her golf swings. 

“Before the golf match, at the driving range, if I don’t have three good swings with good tempo it will make me have a bad round,” Miranda said. 

Completing this routine to fulfill her superstition helps her to be confident with her swing and have a successful match. 

A common superstition mentioned earlier is eating a particular foods before a game. To make sure he plays well, Brayden Wagner eats three hot dogs from the concession stand before each of his basketball games.

“Chowing down on three hot-dogs pre-game gives me a great sense of motivation and confidence,” he stated. 

Breaking superstitions can result in bad games

One day before a soccer game, freshman Marissa Cacciotti didn’t listen to a certain song to get her mentally prepared. Because Marissa broke her superstition, “[the team] ended up losing and played bad on defense,” she remembered. 

According to these student-athletes, not only do superstitions grant them the ability to play well, but failing to complete the superstitions will trigger a bad game with poor performance. 

Ethan Johnston, a junior, has an unwavering trust in the idea of “look good, play good.” If Ethan doesn’t have “drip” for his golf matches, then he “always seem[s] to play badly.”

Unfortunately, he once played a match with “no drip” and played “terribly.” However, he appreciates his teammates, Zach Pier and Caleb Beiswenger, for their dedication to the “look good, play good” superstition. 

The golf team gains its momentum from its above-par drip. (Courtesy photo)

 “My fellow golf teammate Zach Pier has the same superstition as me. You could say he and I are the drippiest on the team, and Caleb Beiswenger also has very solid drip,” Ethan said.

Connor Cobaugh shares the same belief that breaking a superstition will cause a bad game on the baseball field. He won’t step on the foul lines, and if the team is losing in the last inning, he has to turn his hat inside out. 

“If I break a superstition before a game, we will lose or we will lose worse than we would have already,” Connor said. 

He shared that his former teammate, Cooper Guyer, was superstitious as well, since he “never wore underwear under his baseball pants.”

Superstition or routine?

“I think if you play good, then you play good. People can have things they do to prepare themselves for games or competitions. But, I don’t think there are things that make them play better,” said volleyball player Addy Turek. 

That outlook of having routines, but not necessarily superstitions, is shared among some other B-A athletes and coaches. They believe their patterns and routines are what give them confidence and put them in the right headspace before a game. 

Senior jumper, Noah Green, follows patterns that he doesn’t consider superstitions. Noah prays and eats Sour Patch Kids before his meets, along with his teammates Jayden Bartlebaugh and Jake Mercer, who share the same routine. 

“If I don’t eat my Sour Patch kids, I might lose energy,” Noah stated. 

Football and track mentor Mr. Nick Lovrich is a coach who, according to his fellow coaches, players, or even family members, is deemed “very superstitious.” Yet, he considers himself to be “a creature of habit.” Whether it’s doing the same routine every day or week, he does not consider those to be superstitions.

“There are times where I think that I am superstitious and switch little things if I think about it, but it doesn’t really have any impact on our game or meet,” he said. “The more prepared you are, the better chance you have of winning…doing the same things help me prepare the best”. 

Whether or not these athletes eat three hot dogs before a game, listen to a certain song, or avoid stepping on the foul lines, they all have steps they take to get themselves mentally prepared for a game. Regardless if the actions are considered superstitions or routines, either one could assist in improving confidence for them to do their best.