Upcoming Winter Sports: Insight and Advice

Jessie Gates and Kate Kelly, Staff Writer

Winter sports season has begun…. which means lots of exciting games and events to look forward to. There are many talented sports teams in the Torrey community: including surf, soccer, basketball, and more! After interviewing some Country day athletes, we were able to get an insight into some of these upcoming sports. 


Chase Bell 25’, Surf team

Sophomore Chase Bell, a member of the Country Day Surf team, is very excited about the upcoming season. Chase has been surfing at LJCDS for two years. He decided to join the team because of his growing interest and passion for surfing, as he wanted the opportunity to compete in competitions. Chase is most excited for competitions with big waves because, in his  previous season, the waves were smaller than he had hoped they would be. He is looking forward to improving his skill and performing better as an overall team. When asked what advice he would give to someone interested in joining the Surf team, Chase replied, “You should go ahead and join. It is not a big time commitment, and it doesn’t matter how much experience you have. There is always room for improvement.” The Surf team’s practices have more flexibility than traditional sports in the Upper School. It’s much more low-key, and the team chooses to organize practices whenever they want. Chase explained they have a group chat, and someone will usually just text on it and see who wants to go surfing. They compete about once a month throughout their season. Chase’s main goal for the season is to bond with his teammates and advance as much as possible. The Surf team stays connected outside of competitions through their group chat which you use whenever anyone has questions or simply wants to see who is available to go surfing. . Chase explained that when they are at competitions, they are always rooting for their teammates, and they easily connect because they bond so much.  Anyone interested in trying this sport (especially girls since there are not many on the team!) should give Surf a chance. 


Ely Elegado and Henry Kiamilev, 25’, Men’s Basketball

Sophomores Ely Elegado and Henry Kiamilev are currently on the LJCDS Varsity basketball team. Henry and Ely started playing basketball at a young age. Henry has been playing for nine years and Ely for eleven. Both Henry and Ely played for Country Day in their freshman year and are looking forward to their upcoming sophomore year. Growing up in a family of basketball players, Ely always knew he wanted to play this sport. Henry was first introduced to his love for the sport when he started playing 2K, a popular video game. For the 2022 basketball season, Ely and Henry are looking forward to beating their biggest rivals: Santa Fe and Carlsbad. They are also looking forward to winning the CIF championship. Ely and Henry’s advice to students interested in playing basketball is not to compare themselves to others when starting out. They feel basketball is a fun way to meet new people and make friends. Off the court, the team stays connected through team dinners, Facetime calls, and spending time together at school. The close team has a great family atmosphere, and many of the athletes have been playing together for a very long time. They wanted to shout out captain Bito Bass-Sulpizio, for being a great leader on and off the court. Ely and Henry wanted to add, “You wake up with two things: a chance and a choice” – DJ Gay. #bringthewine.


Jojo Criado 25”, Women’s Soccer

For the first time in a while, women’s soccer has enough people to form 2 teams, which is instrumental in expanding the program. Sophomore Jojo Criado is a member of the Varsity women’s soccer team. She played soccer from 1st-7th grade and is now starting to play again in her sophomore year. She decided to join because she knew she wanted to play a sport for Country Day, and she had experience playing soccer, so she was excited to get back into it. She is most looking forward to winning games as well as team bonding and getting to know different people. When asked what advice she would give to someone who’s interested in playing soccer, Jojo said, “Soccer is such an amazing experience and a great way to bond and talk to different people. I love how soccer has introduced me to people in other grades from the school.” Jojo’s main goal for the season is to be a valuable member of the team as well as to win some games. The soccer team stays connected off the field through a group chat, as well as upcoming team bonding events. 


Davin Doak, 24’, Men’s Soccer

Men’s soccer is among the most popular sports at LJCDS, with over 40 boys making up the JV and Varsity teams. Junior Davin Doak is a member of the men’s Varsity soccer team. He has played at Country Day for the past four years but has been playing outside of school for ten years. He decided to join the team because he had played soccer almost all his life. He is most looking forward to spending time with his teammates, as well as beating Bishops. Davin recommends joining the soccer team because it is a fantastic opportunity and helps with communication skills. His goals for the season are to improve as a player, work well with his teammates, make it to the playoffs, and win states. The team stays connected off the field through their group chat and talking at school. Davin also wanted to shout out the amazing coaches.