Following the career of players as they grow throughout high school can be an entertaining experience. Even more entertaining to watch, is when these athletes have siblings that participate in the same sport and on the same team. Not only is it more enjoyable to watch, but it also fosters a unique bond between the siblings. They both go through the same experiences, from the thrill of an exciting victory, to the despair of a devastating loss. They both undergo the same training, and they both work towards similar goals. Having a sibling that is on the same sports team can not only bring the two closer together as a family, but as friends as well.
Three examples of these sibling athletes that are currently at Steinbrenner are the Millers, Whitmers, and the Gadsons. Each pair of siblings has their own interesting pros and cons of what it’s like to play on the same team as their brother or sister.
Senior Jackson Miller and junior Jameson “Jamie” Miller are brothers who have been running track since middle school. However, this isn’t the first team that they have played on together.
“We were on the same team for a couple years. We didn’t play the same position, but it was still always competition. We’d play at our house and what not. You know, somebody’s goalie, defender, whatever. I would try and score on him, stuff like that” said Jamie Miller.
“It’s always nice to have somebody to play with at your house, and while I’m sure we had some fights here and there, it’s always fun” said Jackson Miller.
In middle school, Jamie and Jackson both took an interest in competing in track.
“In Georgia, when I was in middle school, we would play man hunt for like three or four hours every Saturday night. And I would win a lot, because I could outrun these kids. I could just sprint faster, but then like I could do it all day, so I was like hey maybe I could do this and win some trophies and stuff” said Jackson Miller.
While Jackson gave up playing soccer, Jamie continued to play until High School, where he continued to run track, as well as tag along with Jackson in running cross country in the fall.
Jackson primarily runs the 800 meter, whereas Jamie runs the 400. This is the race that they truly get a chance to bond, especially when they both run the 400 meter relay.
“I’m better than him at that, which is awesome, but we still always compete together, and it’s nice to run on the same team” said Jamie Miller.
Because of track, Jamie and Jackson believe that it has brought them closer together.
“It’s definitely a thing we do together, that we can complain to each other about how practice sucked, I hate my coaches. I’m so happy we won that meet, and we worked so hard” said Jackson Miller.
“Even if you don’t have any friends or whatever you have a sibling that will be there” said Jamie Miller.
Like the Millers, the Whitmers are brothers who run on track together. They both joined the track team when they started at Steinbrenner in their Freshman year. Ever since they have enjoyed the solidarity of being on the same team.
“I had a lot of friends on the team, so I just decided to do it, just for fun, cause I wasn’t doing anything else,” said Zach Whitmer.
The Whitmer brothers, senior Zach and sophomore Ben Whitmer, run track together. Both of them began running track their freshman year.
Ben joined two years later for similar reasons, when he entered High School. Both mentioned that though they enjoy running together on the team , there can also be some downsides like the mandatory daily practice.
“It’s like really annoying cause I have to bring all his friends too,” said Zach Whitmer.
However, they agreed that it was overall a positive experience being on the same team.
“We get to obviously spend a lot more time together, and we can relate more to things, like running. We’re in the same struggles for a lot of it, so I feel like we’re closer from that” said Zach Whitmer.
Another dynamic duo is senior Serena Gadson and sophomore Kennaria Gadson, who both started to run track around the same time, nearly seven years ago.
“We’ve always been really athletic, and track was one of the middle school sports, and so I decided to find interest in it, and I kinda think we just stuck with it and decided to do it in high school,” said Serena Gadson.
Kennaria Gadson stated that running track with her sister was her favorite part about running.
“We can rely on each other, and like when we’re running, we know whether, like, we’re doing good or bad, and knowing what’s wrong because of, like, how she’s running and stuff like that. Also she is probably my biggest competitor because we push each other a lot at practice and we kind of understand each other. So I like running with her because of that reason,” said Kennaria Gadson.
“We have to go home together every day, so we hear the… like if we do bad, we hear it from our dad and coaches together, so that’s what I don’t like, and it’s kind of annoying,” said Serena Gadson.
However, she agreed that it could be a positive thing too, since it brings them closer together.
Like the others, they both believed that running track together has been a good experience.
“We definitely are closer now because of it. We go through ups and downs together, we go through the pain together,” said Serena Gadson.
Being on a sports team can be a truly amazing experience. And when you’re on the team with your sibling, it can make the experience even better.
Nicholas Sowell//Co-Sports Editor