Empty Stands: The Double Standards of the Green Wall

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Shelby Jaunal

Green Wall sings “Don’t Stop Believing” at the black-out football game on

Allie Medina, Writer

57.4% of high school students play sports and 63% have dated before 12th grade. 98% can say they have at least 2 close friends.

 

So with 98% of people having close friends and 63% having dated, why are the crowds at Forge games so low?

 

“I think most people don’t go to tennis games because we don’t get much attention and they think our matches will be boring. I think other teams get a lot of crowds because the people playing are more popular and interesting to them,” says a girls tennis player*. “I’ve never had a friend go to one of my matches but if they did I would be so grateful. I love playing so I think it would be fun for them to show their support.”

 

Everyone wants the support of their friends. It makes them feel good to know someone is cheering for them besides their parents and a few younger siblings.

 

“When my friends go to my games I feel like I do so much better. I know you’re supposed to play well regardless of who’s in the stands, but I can’t help it. I get excited and pumped and I want to go out and show off,” said a varsity boys soccer player.

 

And the sentiment is the same for girls. No matter your gender or sport, having someone there for you makes you feel good.

 

“I love when my friends come to my games because it really shows they care about our friendship and that they support me,” said varsity softball player. “It doesn’t happen that often, though. They mostly go to the baseball games instead; they’re at the same time as my games.”

 

So why all the interest in baseball? They have a steady record and good players but nothing all that exciting, nothing much better than most of the other Forge spring teams. Nothing much better than the undefeated girl’s lacrosse team or the girl’s soccer team with a #10 national ranking, as well as the undefeated label.

 

The reason for the crowd is just that, the crowd.

 

At least that’s one varsity cheerleader says.

 

“It’s fun to go to baseball games. But I don’t go for the game if I’m being honest. I like hanging out with my friends while I’m there and sometimes we’ll make Tik Toks or something like that. The people there are the fun part, not the people playing,” a male baseball attendee said.

 

Others have different reasons, with more.

 

“I go to as many of my boyfriend’s games as I can. It’s nice to be there and show support.”

 

Being there for your significant other is a nice sentiment, but not one all high-school couples indulge in.

 

“My ex never went to any of my track meets, even though I went to all of his JV baseball games. The sad part is he didn’t even play. He kept score. He didn’t even play and I still went. Just to show him I cared. But he couldn’t do the same. Looking back I realize how bad it was,” a female varsity track athlete said.

 

She isn’t alone. Other girls talked about their current boyfriends and how their support wavered. A varsity softball team member shared her worry that the special people in her life wouldn’t follow through with their promises.

 

“I’ve gone to all of my friends’ senior nights so far. None of them have offered to go to mine, including my boyfriend. If he doesn’t go I’ll definitely be pretty upset since I’ve talked with him before about showing more support,”

 

A member of the girl’s lacrosse team had a piece of advice she wanted to share,

 

“Don’t go to your boyfriend’s games if he isn’t planning on going to yours. With my ex, I assumed he would go to mine if I went to his and the later and later it got into the season, the more I came to the realization he was never going. The guys I’ve dated have expected me to go their games because they were ‘exciting’ and one even complained that my games were boring.” the softball player said.

 

The lack of support boys show towards their girlfriends, especially in sports, is nothing new. Even girls showed less support towards their female friends, instead choosing to go to baseball or lacrosse games. It isn’t just Forge at fault. Even on the professional level women’s sports are treated with much less value compared to men’s sports. The men’s soccer team has never won a world cup, only reaching the semi-finals way back in 1930. Whereas the women’s team has won four times, and bring in more revenue than their male counterparts. These facts are not reflected in their pay checks, with the long standing fight for equal pay still unresolved. But on a smaller level, it’s easy for Forge do a better job of showing their appreciation for female athletes, as well as both of their tennis teams.

 

“My friends don’t go to my matches. Never have, probably never will. That’s just the way it is and I don’t think it’s going to change,” says a member of the boy’s tennis team.

 

It’s sad and surprising that a school with such a high standard in terms of athleticism, has such little involvement in the sports department. The misogynistic perspectives surrounding girl’s and boy’s sports should have been broken by now, but until then the fight to be noticed will persist for female Forge athletes.

 

You don’t have to enjoy the sports, bring a couple friends, or your little sister or anybody you enjoy spending time with and show your support for your fellow Forge Eagle.

 

 

*Subjects remained anonymous so individual friends did not feel called out for not going to other friends games.