Hail to thee our Alma Mater

Chloe Polizzi '23, Staff Writer

A HEARTFUL HUDDLE Prior to racing on Oct. 31, the girls cross-country team joins together for the team cheer, to drive themselves to victory. (Stephen Zaranek)

The Grosse Pointe South Alma Mater has been a tradition on the cross country team since 1979. The head coach of the women’s team, Stephen Zaranek, began a tradition when he first recognized the symbolism in the lyrics.

“Yeah, I would say the first word that comes to mind is unity, you know, coming together,” Zaranek said. “And it’s a sentimental look at a school with deep traditions that can be heard by any generation of South students, you know, I’ve talked to people that are up in their 80s that remember that song, and, you know, it brings back memories.”

Cross country is one of the more competitive sports in our world today, and here at Grosse Pointe South we believe that it is very important to remember that we are all one community and one team. Singing the Alma Mater as a student can help athletes feel confident about their performance after a challenging meet, reminding them that their team is always by their side. Ivy Pellerito ’24 is a junior on the team, and shared her experience with the Alma mater

“I think it’s an important tradition to keep because it’s fun and connects the team after meets,” Pellerito said. “The song symbolizes team spirit and cross country is not only an individual sport, it requires an entire team’s effort and support.”

Being on a team sport is far from easy, everyone has to work together and combine their best efforts to achieve the win. Some sports however are completely individual, like gymnastics. Which causes the question, do all sports at South participate in this tradition? Lucy Van Syckle ’23 was also on the women’s cross country team here at South and believes the Alma Mater is the key in keeping the true team spirit.

“I believe all sports should partake in singing the Alma Mater after a meet or game,” Van Syckle said. “It always helped me remember that I was not alone in the fight, and I think it would really help a lot of teams here come together and form goals that they all are driven to complete.”