The fresh kids corner: Sophie Frick

Josh Yuen, Author

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Participating in a varsity sport under the stress and spotlight of high-pressure games and tournaments can be daunting, especially to those with little experience playing at that level. In this second installment of a three-part series, The Paly Voice features the youngest and least-experienced members of the Palo Alto High School varsity basketball teams: the freshmen.

Recently, The Paly Voice sat down with one of the two freshmen on this year’s girls’ basketball team, forward Sophie Frick, to talk about life at Paly, inspirational teammates and what it will take for the girls’ team to finish strong.

Freshman forward Sophie Frick warms up behind the three-point line prior to a game vs. Gunn earlier this season. Frick is one of two freshman on the girls' team this season. Photo by George Lu.

Freshman forward Sophie Frick warms up behind the three-point line prior to a game vs. Gunn earlier this season. Frick is one of two freshman on the girls’ team this season. Photo by George Lu.

The Paly Voice: It’s a unique situation to play varsity basketball as a freshman. What’s it like for you?

Sophie Frick: It’s a really, really special experience, especially getting to play with the older players. You get to learn a ton from the upperclassmen, and even though there’s not that many, the people that are older than me and Carly [Leong], we get to learn a lot from them.

TPV: Speaking of the older players, out of all the other players on the team, who do you look up to most? Personality-wise and playing-wise?

SF: I would pick Coco Lovely because she’s a beast out there on the court, diving after every loose ball and looking for every drive and every rebound. Overall, she’s such a happy person and always really positive – something I aspire to be like.

TPV: What do you like about Coach Scott Peters as a mentor?

SF: Coach Scott is very passionate about the game. You will not meet anybody who loves the game more than him and cares about all of us and the team more. He’ll get us pizza after practice because we did well, and he teaches us stuff that I would not learn from any other coach.

TPV: What do you like most about the high school experience thus far?

SF: I honestly really like the different people and the overall environment and atmosphere at Paly. There’s a lot of really positive people, teachers, staff and upperclassmen. New friends are great, as well.

TPV: All right. What’s the worst thing about the transition to high school?

SF: I would probably say getting used to scheduling and time management. But I am learning and getting used to it.

TPV: What’s your individual goal for the rest of the season? What do you think about this team’s potential? What does a team that has started so strong have to do to finish strong?

SF: Our stretch goal is to win CCS [Central Coast Section], without a doubt. My personal goal would be to continue to improve as a team player and pass to teammates that are open. Small things like that. We all want to finish strong.

TPV: Is there an athlete in professional sports who you look up to? Kind of like Lovely, but someone more well known?

SF: I don’t think there’s a particular athlete. I think it’s more like a team play, like the San Francisco 49ers, even though they didn’t do very well this year. In past years, however, their defense really works together and makes plays as a team.

TPV: What does it mean to you to have Carly [Leong] on the team with you, as a fellow freshman going through the same experience?

SF: Carly’s like my No. 1 on the team. Being freshman buddies means getting the freshman treatment on the team, whether that’s gathering loose balls [or] stuff like that. But it’s really nice to experience this great team and great season with her.

TPV: What does Paly need to know about you for the future?

SF: I’m ready for the next three years of basketball and other sports, as well. I hope to make a big difference in the athletics.

Frick and the girls’ team is currently 22-2 overall, with an undefeated record of 12-0 in the De Anza League.