Athlete of the issue: Senior Jake Hicks and his devotion to the field
For many students at CCHS, sports are a very important part of their life. With the variety of teams that CCHS has to offer, it is not uncommon to meet someone who is part of at least one of them. For senior Jake Hicks, sports have been a passion of his since he was a toddler.
Hicks began to play soccer at the age of three and has continued to play since then. He plays on a travel team as well as on the CCHS varsity boys soccer team as a midfielder. Hicks enjoys spending his time on the field.
“It’s a way to let out some energy and get the adrenaline rush of playing a good game,” Hicks said. “Soccer [is a sport that] I have always been playing and enjoy.”
Hicks has grown up playing sports in Cooper City, alongside many CCHS students. Skylah Klein, a class of 2021 alumna, has known Hicks for many years and has watched him grow as an athlete and person both on and off the field.
“We have always supported each other on and off the field.”CCHS class of 2021 alumna Skylah Klein
“It’s been amazing to grow up and go to school with Jake since the early days in elementary school. We have always supported each other on and off the field,” Klein said. “He is an extremely hard-worker and succeeds in any sport that he plays. His effort is great and he really contributes so well to his team. I’m lucky to call him a good friend and know that we’ll be friends for life.”
Not only does Hicks play soccer, but he also plays football and golf. Although he is not on an official team, he golfs in his free time. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Hicks had a lot of free time which enabled him to begin playing golf again on the weekends.
Football is a sport that is new to Hicks. For his final year at CCHS, he decided to try something new and join the varsity football team. Hicks made this decision because he had always wanted to try it and senior year would be his final opportunity to do so.
“Seeing [Jake] put himself out there to try football for the first time as a senior was admirable. In this COVID year, we are proud of him for trying a new experience,” Jake Hicks’ mom and CCHS staff member Nicole Hicks said. “When so many things seem lost for our kids, we are proud he tried to make the best of his senior year. He said if he never tried, he knew it would be something he would always regret. I admire that in him.”
“Seeing [Jake] put himself out there to try football for the first time as a senior was admirable.”Jake Hicks’ mom and CCHS staff member Nicole Hicks
Playing football was a different experience, but one that Hicks liked doing. Knowing that this year was like no other due to the global pandemic, Hicks took advantage of his chance to try something new and take on a challenge. He was the fullback for the CCHS varsity team.
“It’s fun to do the things you enjoy,” Hicks said. “I played football to try it out, I made a lot of new friends and got to try a new sport.”
As for the future, Hicks wants to focus on college as he plans to major in business. He plans to play some sports, but focus primarily on his education and truly making the most of his college experience.
“I knew since I was younger [that] I wanted to experience college.”Senior Jake Hicks
“I do not plan to play soccer in college,” Hicks said. “I knew since I was younger [that] I wanted to experience college. Athletics in college is a full-time job and I want to have fun. I definitely will do sports in college and activities, [though].”
For many high school students, it is important to find one’s place on campus. For Hicks, this was easy– his place was on the field. Hicks’ success as an athlete has allowed him to grow as a person and find his passion.
“It has always been exciting to watch Jake on the field,” Nicole Hicks said. “It is his favorite place to be in school and where he feels most comfortable.”
Photos courtesy of Nicole Hicks