End of a Journey

Seniors reflect on their upcoming final season


Senior Grace Sims performing at ages 7 and 17.

The class of 2022 reaching the beginning of its senior year means the last season of sports, activities, and hobbies for possibly the rest of our lives. Passions that we have had and pursued throughout our entire lives are fast approaching their final curtain. Do we continue them in college and beyond? Do we leave them behind in this chapter of our lives? Lots of decisions have to be made this year, and leaving behind our childhood passions is one of the most difficult.

Senior Kyra Hoffman (right #12) stands on the court.


“I played a lot of sports and did a lot of activities as a kid, including ballet and soccer, but none of them stuck with me,” said Senior Kyra Hoffman, who has been playing basketball since pre-K. “Basketball was the one activity I was still excited about playing.”


Even if basketball is fun and exciting, it can take a toll on you.


Hoffman (right jumping) at the jump.

“Honestly, there have been a lot of times that I wanted to quit… I played with the same girls for comp from fourth to eighth grade, and they have always been super cliquey,” Hoffman reflected. “I am glad I stuck with it after that, because I do love the sport, and the high school team is not the same way. However, it does have its own challenges. I get really low mentally during the basketball season because of the drama within the team and playing time.” 


Even when things on the court get difficult, basketball can teach many life lessons.


“I have overcome challenges… (particularly) learning how to own my voice with the high school coaches and let them know what I am feeling about situations respectfully,” Hoffman finished.

Senior Logan Huggard in his 3rd grade football jersey.


One of the  staple sports at our school is, of course, football. Senior Logan Huggard has been playing football for nine years. 


“After my very first week of football practice, I ran off the field every day crying to my dad, begging him to let me quit,” Huggard said, “but I continue to play football because I owe it to myself and my teammates to finish what I started nine years ago.”


Even when the game is hard, the actual playing isn’t always what means the most to its players.

Huggard (#50) on the field during his Junior season.


“The friendships I have developed while playing football are the sole reason I continue to play,” Huggard continued. “I have overcome toxic coaches (and) several injuries, (but) far and away my favorite thing about football is the relationship I have with my teammates.”


Sports aren’t the only long-time hobbies thriving at Juan Diego. Senior Grace Sims has been doing theater since she was 5 and has been in JD’s musicals since eighth grade.


Senior Grace Sims (center in silver) taking a bow at age 7.

“I like entertaining. I like making people feel something,” Sims said. “The thought of doing the school play every year is one of my favorite things because it means I’ll get to be surrounded by a community of people who I know love and support me.”


“When I got into high school, I realized this is probably what I want to do for the rest of my life. There was a time last year when I tried to talk myself out of doing theater professionally because it’s not the most stable and sustainable career, but we did ‘(The 25th Annual Putnam County) Spelling Bee’ last year and it made me realize I could never quit this,” Sims stated.


Sometimes, childhood passions turn into professional lifetimes.

Sims performing in last year’s school production of “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee”

“I want to study theater in college, and then do it all: Broadway, TV, film, everything. The joy I get when I’m on stage makes me feel I was born to do it. It is natural for me. I wouldn’t change a thing about it, from rehearsal to even draining tech week. I always forget how much I love it up until I’m doing it and then I remember: this is my favorite thing in the world,” Sims finished.


From basketball to football to theater, the class of 2022 has a very diverse and active group of students with a myriad of different goals and interests in life. It will be amazing to see what they do with their passions and talents throughout the rest of their lives.