Athlete of the Issue: Romy Tarantino ’21


Matthijs Van Mierlo

Tarantino practicing on Hoyt Field this October. Girls Varsity Soccer has been focusing on building skills and strength this season.

Romy Tarantino is a three-year Senior, co-captain of the Girls Varsity Soccer team, and member of the Girls Varsity Lacrosse team. Teammate Lydia Bullock ’22 said, “Romy is nothing short of a great leader. She fearlessly took the role of captain on the soccer team when we didn’t even have a season. She is so kind and never fails to make everyone around her feel like they fit right.”

How has this year’s circumstances changed your practices?

Since we don’t have games this year, we have been focusing on using this time to build the team’s skills and strength. We have a really great group of Upper Mids and lowerclass students who will be responsible for carrying the team next season, so we are focusing on developing our players and perfecting our shots, touches, and attitudes on and off the field. Before heading back into our second quarantine, we were beginning to do small scrimmages, transitioning into full-field ones. Despite not having games, I am impressed with how motivated everyone is.

We have also incorporated more small group drills into practice. Lately, we’ve been doing “soccer olympics” with the same teams, which makes us more competitive and motivated to push our limits. I hope after this second quarantine ends we can get back on Hoyt Field to finish the Olympics! 

What have you been looking forward to this season?

No matter how disappointing it is not to have games, I’m so grateful to go to Hoyt each afternoon and play my favorite sport with this amazing team. COVID-19 has definitely helped us bond in a different way than normal because we are able to take the time during practice to talk with each other and reflect on everything together as a group. 

What do you love most about soccer?

There is nothing better than working towards a common goal with a group of people that you’re so close to. Soccer has been the most supporting community I’ve ever been a part of, especially here at Hotchkiss. Going to practice after a long day of classes has been the best outlet for me to let out my stress and spend time with some of the best people. I know I can always count on my teammates to make me smile and laugh in between drills and challenge me to be the best player and teammate I can be.

What is your favorite memory or a highlight from past seasons?

One of my favorite memories was from last year when we beat Noble and Greenough School during New Englands. We drove about four hours to play at their school and it was about 15 degrees Fahrenheit outside, so there were plenty of obstacles we had to face that day. We were tied up until the last five or ten minutes of the game when we scored, pulling one of the closest wins of our season. The moment the game finished, we all piled on top of each other, cheering and screaming out of pure happiness and excitement. We had worked so hard that fall and it was finally paying off. I was so incredibly proud to be part of that team.

What advice would you give to current and future Hotchkiss athletes?

Make the most of your time on this campus and with your team. Make an effort to get to know every one of your teammates. You don’t want to regret missing out on all of the great friendships you could have had with teammates, so take a risk. Always push yourself to be the best player on and off the field, because your attitude counts and shapes who you become. Most of all, don’t be too hard on yourself, and remember that at the end of the day we are a community that loves and supports each other.

This interview has been lightly edited for clarity.