The Student News Site of Summit High School

The Summit Pinnacle

The Student News Site of Summit High School

The Summit Pinnacle

The Student News Site of Summit High School

The Summit Pinnacle

Does Anybody Even Notice?

Summit girls sports are killing it (sometimes even more than the boys teams) and get absolutely no recognition

As winter sports begin to kick off, Summit female athletes are hard at work. They put in sizable amounts of time to train and collaborate with their teams—the girls are determined to bring home some more hard-earned wins for Summit. The 2023 fall season was a hit for the ladies, with all Summit teams ranking top 10 on OSAA and soccer placing fifth and volleyball ranking ninth in the state. However, there seemed to be a lack of attention towards their great accomplishments. 

Football, track and field, and soccer are just a few of the sports that Summit is known for, and at the assembly in December those sports seemed to be the main focus. Games and meets are often streamed on YouTube, have professional photographers present and a massive, supportive student section. While it’s great that these sports are successful, there’s a catch: most of these packed stands only appear when the boys team plays.

Summit Senior Reese Riley has been a part of the girls soccer team since her freshman year. Since the beginning of her time on the team, she’s noticed a huge difference between the attention the boys soccer team would receive compared to the girls. 

“Many of our games clashed with the boys [schedule] too, so not many people would come to ours unless it was something like Senior night,” Riley said.

The poor treatment of female sports was brought to many students’ attention during the fall sports season assembly.

A great number of students swarmed into the main gymnasium on Friday, Dec. 8, eager to hear the announcements of fall sport successes from the past season.

Towards the end of the assembly, the lights shut off and the students fell silent to watch a short video recap of the season’s sports highlights. Short clips featured boys soccer, football, and girls volleyball with a hype music mashup playing in the background. The intention for the video was to pump up the students and acknowledge the athletes’ successes, but while it did for select sports teams, others, especially the girls teams, were upset about their lack of recognition in the video. 

This was especially disheartening to the girls’ soccer team. When asking Riley how she felt about not being featured in the video, she expressed that she didn’t quite feel supported by her peers.

“It was pretty disappointing that there was literally no recognition at the assembly,” Riley said. “My friends and I left feeling bothered and upset that they couldn’t even fit a single clip of us in the video.”

Later in the assembly, honorable mentions and successes of their season were announced. For girls soccer, cross country and water polo, the applause from the stands was somewhat lousy compared to the boys soccer and football teams, where they had received a loud, supportive cheer. 

This kind of selective responsiveness goes to show how invisible and irrelevant girls’ sports can be portrayed at Summit. The female athletes on these teams had to work hard just like everybody else, and when their wins for Summit go unrecognized and unsupported, it can feel unrewarding and degrading.

Junior Emerson Williams is a star athlete at Summit who first made her break playing varsity basketball her freshman year. Not only has she been on varsity for basketball, but water polo as well. When asked if she noticed a difference between the boys versus girls games from a perspective of being both a player and a fan, on and off the court, Williams stated that the difference in recognition was strikingly obvious.

“It definitely bothers me, but I’m used to it. At games, I’m used to our stands not being as filled with students as the boys’ games,” Williams said.

At the beginning of 2024, one would think that women have come a long way from how things used to be before the push for athletic equality. However, many students from Summit would argue that there’s still a lot more work that could be done. As we begin our second semester of school and get ready for spring sports to begin, it’s important to recognize female athletes in the Summit community. Whether it’s joining a girls team, attending one of their sport’s games or recognizing both genders’ sports equally in assemblies, just making more of an effort to root forot for women’s sports could mean more than you think.

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About the Contributor
Danielle Evans
Danielle Evans, Website Editor
When you first meet Danielle, she’ll most definitely greet you with a smile. She is bright and fun, and always down to have a good time in and outside of class. She loves music and will most likely be listening to music anytime, anywhere. “Anything, but rarely country” is her mood when it comes to a music genre. Danielle is very active, dancing ballet five days a week, or hanging with friends in her free time! Danielle loves to write and is eager to see what the future holds for The Summit Pinnacle this year!

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    Kendra J CoatesFeb 21, 2024 at 11:07 pm

    Thank you Danielle for raising your voice! Well done.

    “Each time a woman stands up for herself, without knowing it possibly, without claiming it, she stands up for all women.” ~Maya Angelou

    I was a high school athlete in Oregon in the early 1990s…it’s so frustrating and disappointing and irritating and rude how women athletes are still treated. All because men continue to ignore and dismiss their own mental, social, and emotional learning and health due to an unhealthy combination of loneliness, insecurities, over inflated sense of self, ego, unresolved trauma, and toxic masculinity.

    Thanks again for sharing such an important observation. Are you familiar with the group of 32 female athletes at U of O who filed a federal Title IX lawsuit recently? Their attorney is Arthur Bryant.
    In my opinion all Oregon high schools need a full Title IX review. I’m going to request it.

    What are your thoughts?

    (Dr. Kendra Coates)