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Freshmen to Watch
October 28, 2022
As Dominic Roe ‘26 lined up on the start line of his first-ever track race on the 5th-grade track and field day, he was nervous but excited. He prepared himself to run and little did he know this moment would impact him for at least through his high school career.
“I kind of got fast out of nowhere in fifth grade. On the fifth-grade track and field day, I was in the four-by-one and really liked it. So in seventh grade, I decided to go out for track,.” Dominic said.
In his seventh-grade year, Dom’s love for track expanded as he realized his passion for not only running but also competing.
“The first time I ran hurdles in a meet and won really showed me how much I loved track and was committed to it,” Dominic said.. “Winning felt really good and I just think it is really exciting to race other people that I don’t know.”
Throughout his seventh and eighth-grade track seasons, Dom explored some different events, but found his favorite to be hurdles.
“The first time I fell on the hurdles at practice at Southeast and I hit my shin on a hurdle and I landed at the next hurdle. I remember just being really confused, but now I think it’s pretty funny in retrospect.”
Outside of track season, Dom spends his time playing other sports that he also enjoys like football and wrestling. In football, Dom plays on the freshman-sophomore team.
He has found motivation within a beloved coach in the City High community, Mitch Moore.
“I know he’s a football coach, but he’s helped me figure out who I am in sports in a way,.” Dominic said.
Dom is anticipating the track season and the transition from junior high track to high school track. He plans on improving in every aspect of running including his speed and form.
“I am excited for sure but definitely a little bit more nervous this year just because high school sports are obviously more serious than junior high sports,” Dominic said..
“Overall, I am looking forward to practicing with upperclassmen and competing against upperclassmen from schools farther away that we didn’t really get to compete against in junior high.”
Dom can be found running 100-meter hurdles, 100-meter dash, 200-meter dash, and occasionally long jump.
“I want people to realize what you can do when you put your mind to things. I didn’t think I was going to do good in hurdles but I was put in them and I did well and I had that realization of oh, I can do this,” Roe ‘26 said.
After a slow season last year, The Little Hawk Golf Team had a bounce-back season with a spark from freshman Jack Rogers ‘26. Jack led the team to a great season that included two team wins and a top 10 finish in the 4A district meet and one individual co-medalist.
“I feel like I had my ups and downs but for the most part, I played alright. A lot of my 18-hole scores weren’t my best, but I had a few good rounds and altogether it was a solid season,” Rogers said.
Jack Rogers was the leading scorer in all statistical categories for the team with his low 9 hole being 35, 9 hole average being about 38, 18 hole low being 77, and 18 hole average of 80.
“I think one of my goals that I’ve always had even going into this season was making state individually, but I think we will have a solid chance of making it as a team in the coming seasons,” Rogers said.
Rogers also finished in the top 10 in the 14-15 Iowa PGA junior rankings as a 14 year old, with numerous wins on the tour.
“Jack contributed on the varsity team at a level not many freshmen have here at City High. He’s had the opportunity to play a lot of competitive golf and that has helped him earn the number one spot on our team. That number one spot meant that he played in the same group as many of the best golfers in the state and he was able to constantly turn in some great scores while doing it. That being said, I know Jack would be the first one to tell you that he is capable of continuing to get better, lower his scores, and lead this team over the next few years,” Coach Phil Lala said.
Over the winter Jack plans on playing freshman basketball and continuing to practice. City High is developing an indoor hitting bay for the players to practice. Outside of City, Jack plans to practice with several of the other team members at Golfletics where they combine weight training with indoor hitting ranges.
At a young age, Tessa Driscoll didn’t “play ball like a girl”. Growing up in Illinois, Tessa started her basketball career playing against boys.
“I started a basketball when I was in first grade, I played on an all-boys YMCA rec league team. Playing with all boys taught me a lot, it kind of taught me how to play the way I play,” Tessa said.
Basketball wasn’t only a fun way for Tessa to spend her free time, but it was also a way to connect with her dad.
“My dad always motivated me a lot, he taught me how to play, and he would always rebound for me in the driveway,” Tessa said.
After her dad passed, Tessa found solace in basketball more than ever. Something she and her dad used to enjoy together, she now enjoyed in his memory.
“When my dad passed away, basketball really got me through it. It’s just the one thing that’s constant for me that I can rely on. It has been a big part of keeping me happy,” Tessa said.
Through the years Tessa has committed a lot of time, energy, and resources to basketball, oftentimes spending hours at the courts at a time. Practicing by herself and with her club team All Iowa Attack.
“During AAU season, there will be a two-hour practice two days a week and then on the weekends, there are usually two four-hour practices. In between there, I like to go to Court 45 which is a gym I workout at and I also spend time shooting at City too,” Tessa said.
While Tessa spends most of her time on the court playing basketball, she also participates in soccer and track. She spent three years with Iowa Soccer Club, but recently stepped away to dedicate more time to her primary sport, basketball. She runs 400’s and 800’s in track and field.
This year, Tessa is excited to play ball with her older sister Mia Driscoll ‘23.
“Watching my sister play, as she grew up, made me want to play harder. I look forward to playing with her, especially because she’ll be a senior this year.”
Looking into the season, Tessa plans on contributing to the Little Hawks’ success, but most of all she plans on sharpening her skills playing against older competitors.
As Rachel Haack approached the ICCSD Track and Field Day in the fifth grade she pondered what activity she would participate in, having no idea that she would win state for discus in three short years. Rachel had no prior experience with throwing but continued into junior high for her first season on a team.
“After track and field day is when I started to realize that oh, man, I could be really good at this,” Haack said.
In Rachel’s first season, she gainedgot a feel for throwingwhat throwing really is. She spent most of her time at practice improving at both shotput and discus, but Rachel didn’t spend much time outside of track practice or season working on her skills.
As Rachel improved at throwing she found friendship with a teammate she threw with, Hannah Braun ‘26. The two grew in their friendship and motivated each other, relating their struggles and sharing their successes, they propelled each other to improve and even began taking lessons together.
“Hannah and I started doing private lessons with a woman who went to West High, we go to the university track field and we practice once a week for two hours with her,.” Rachel said.
In 8th grade, Rachel qualified for state and threw at state, ending 1st in discus and 3rd in shotput. The success was a big deal to Rachel and it motivated her further in her love for throwing
“I was super nervous but it was so much fun because Hannah and I were together. We threw discus first and I messed up but I got better and ended up throwing a PR for both discus and shotput,” Rachel said.
Rachel also plays volleyball but considers throwing as her primary sport and is eagerly anticipating her first track and field season on the City High team. She has goals set and is planning to enjoy her season and make new friends.
“I’m just looking forward to getting better honestly. I still have a lot of techniques to learn. I have goals to get a PR this season, and hopefully, even be on varsity. I recognize that’s a big jump from middle school track and field, but that would be my main goal.”