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Larkins: “It was definitely a really hard decision for all of us”

UVM’s senior captain discusses the decision by the women’s basketball team to discontinue the season.
Published: Feb. 2, 2021 at 9:16 PM EST
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - A department-wide pause by UVM Athletics is set to come to an end on Thursday.

The UVM women’s hockey (Feb 9th at Merrimack) and men’s basketball teams (Feb. 13th-14th vs Stony Brook) have dates set for when they will return to play.

One UVM team that will not be returning is women’s basketball. Just days after the announcement of the department-wide pause, the women’s basketball program announced that it would not play out the rest of the season.

The Cats were 4-2, but had already had to miss their last four games due to COVID-related issues, before the complete pause that would have kept them sidelined into February.

It was also stated that the decision to discontinue the season was made by the players themselves.

On Tuesday, we heard from the players for the first time on the decision as the lone senior on the women’s basketball team, captain Josie Larkins, met with the media.

Larkins said that each player had their own individual struggles with the decision on whether or not to play on. Challenges such as dealing with multiple quarantines and being isolated from seeing family or friends outside of the team since the Cats arrived on campus in the summer, including the holidays.

Ultimately, the group came together and made, not the decision they wanted to make, but one they felt was the best to make under the circumstances.

“We definitely had players on our team who were struggling with the decision.”, said Larkins. “Some who really wanted to keep playing and some who were leaning either way, and eventually when we came to the decision, and all the different factors we talked about with the coaches, it just didn’t seem logical for us to play in our next game or really finish up the season.”

“It was definitely a really hard decision for all of us, especially on myself,”, added Larkins, “but there’s a point when you know somethings right and also there’s a point where you don’t want to make that decision, because we love basketball and want to keep on playing, and in our hearts that’s what we wanted to do, but we kind of had to think, I guess, with our brains more and focus on that decision more because that’s what we thought was really best for our team.

Larkins also described the stress of having to go into quarantine, something players on the team had to do on several occasions, and the impact that had on the entire team over the course of their time together this season.

“All of the underclassmen had to go to a separate dorm on campus (for quarantine).”, said Larkins. “They have to move all of their stuff out of their own personal dorms to go to individual rooms, and it’s very emotionally draining to just put your life on pause for a week, or sometimes a little more, and just stay in a room for that amount of time. For me, I’m living in an apartment off campus with some of my teammates and us having to text each other when one of us wants to go to the bathroom because we don’t wanna come in contact with each other, it definitely was emotionally draining for all of us.”

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