Captains’ corner

Each week, the Phi will highlight two captains and learn a little about what drives them to be leaders, both in the game and in the locker room.

Caroline Blackmon

Maggie Waxter, field hockey/lacrosse:

There aren’t many people who can pull off playing two sports in college, especially at a college like Washington and Lee University.

Maggie Waxter, ’17, has done it for four years. She plays both field hockey and lacrosse and is a captain in both sports.

Waxter has been playing lacrosse since she was five-years-old and she’s been playing field hockey since she was in sixth grade.

“I’m from Baltimore so everyone plays lacrosse; you’re literally born with a stick in your hand,” she said. “For field hockey, I was playing soccer and randomly decided to play field hockey for [my] school and ended up being pretty good at it. So I decided to switch.”

Even though this is Waxter’s first year as a captain on both teams, she has already figured out what extra characteristics her captaincy brings to the team.

“I think I’m a pretty good communicator, I talk a lot especially on the field. I’m a pretty positive person and I see the good in every player,” she said. “On the field, I try to go as hard as I can for the person next to me and to put as much effort in to inspire people to do the same.”

Immediately after saying this, Waxter noted that she has weaknesses she works on daily as a captain.

“I get too much in the heat of the game and sometimes my emotions get the best of me,” she said. “Also I’m pretty hard on myself so that some- times translates to other parts of the team. I’m trying to work on that and be more positive towards myself.”

Being a two-sport captain has its toll, though. Waxter acknowledges that being a captain for two teams, and really just playing two sports in general, is a lot of work.

“Definitely the workload of playing both was something I had to consider especially since W&L is such a hard school,” she said. “But it helps me to balance my time and forces me to not procrastinate.”

Waxter also only have one week off between the two season. Despite the time commitment, the family aspect of both teams make it worth it.

“My favorite part is the team dynamic that is created just by playing with each other every day and going to practice every day,” she said. “You’re so tight with each other and you can rely on each other and trust each other in every aspect.”

For Waxter, this is the main reason she has never questioned whether she should’ve played both sports in college.

“It’s like I have two families on campus. It feels like I always have 20 best friends that I can call if I ever need them,” she said. “I love playing sports.”

Andy Kleinlein, basketball:

Having been on a part of the Washington and Lee University basketball team for over three years, Andy Kleinlein, ’17, brings experience to a team that’s dominated by underclassmen.

“On the court, I try to work as hard as I can and provide a level of experience,” he said. “I try to reflect what [Coach Hutchinson] has to say and tie that into what we’re trying to do and be an example of what we’re trying to accomplish this year.”

Kleinlein has been playing basketball since he was about four-years- old. His dad loved basketball and raised Kleinlein to love it too. Now, it’s part of Kleinlein’s daily life. Even though the sport has taken a toll on his body physically, he still loves every minute of it.

“Always having the opportunity to compete every day and try to get better and accomplish something is my favorite thing about basketball,” he said.

Kleinlein has never questioned playing basketball in college, despite the huge amount of time he spends to ensure he is physically and mentally prepared for each and every game.

“I’m someone who becomes very obsessed to make sure that I put in the amount of time I need to be prepared,” he said.

He says that he tries to be fairly consistent while he practices so that he can bring this consistency to every game. As a second-year captain, he knows which unique traits he brings to the team.

“My biggest strength is that I’m always in the gym. I try to be there first, and stay there the longest. I try to put in as much time as I can,” he said. “Also, I’m not afraid to push people and step up in that role.”

Through this, he says he thinks building a strong team that depends on each for anything relies on relationships off the court as much as on the court.

“I try to connect with everyone on the team [on] a personal level. I think that gains their respect on the court,” he said. “I try to be a good friend to everyone and try to make good decisions off the court.”

Kleinlein acknowledges weaknesses he has as a captain that he tries to improve upon every day.

“I’m fairly impatient and quick-tempered,” he said. “I expect a lot of myself and of my teammates and I find that when things aren’t going right for myself or other people I want to correct it right then, but sometimes it’s a longer process.”

Overall, Kleinlein realizes the responsibility that comes along with having the influence he does on the team.

“I like being in close communication with the coaches and being able to have them listen to my input. This comes with a certain responsibility,” he said. “There’s also a lot of pressure to perform every single day so I can keep pushing myself and push [the team] to that standard.”