WCHS athletes prepare for future in the NCAA


Noah Rutberg, Madison Cuthbert, and Leah Rubino all express themselves through their sports and are able to continue doing so in college.

By Ally Salzberg, Assistant Online Editor

For most athletes, the last game they play in their senior year can seem like the end of an era. But for some WCHS sports stars, it is just the beginning. 

Being able to play the sport that you love in college is very difficult, as there are so many athletes around the world that are just as good, if not better, than you. Seniors Leah Rubino, Madison Cuthbert and Noah Rutberg are all fortunate enough to be part of the small percentage of student athletes who get to do this. 

“The recruitment process is really stressful,” Cuthbert said. “You have to be really on top of communicating well and showing interest in many schools at once.”

Cuthbert plays on the girls varsity basketball team at WCHS. She has been pursuing the sport she loves since the third grade when she moved to Maryland. Cuthbert was granted the opportunity to play on the women’s basketball team at Salisbury University.

“I was playing a few other sports at the time, but I just really fell in love with basketball,” Cuthbert said. “It was really fast paced, exciting, and fun.”

There is so much that goes into being a college athlete. It really takes a certain type of person to be able to handle all the academic responsibilities, practices,games and social activities that you encounter while at college. 

“My family was so happy for me once I got the offer,” Cuthbert said. “They were excited that all the hardwork and dedication I’ve put in finally paid off.”

Being an athlete in high school is difficult when you have to manage so much. As you start to get to the age where you are allowed to start talking to prospective coaches and different scouts, that is when grades really start to matter. You are still a kid that wants to experience the full high school experience everyone else does, but you still have to balance schoolwork.

If you happen to be pulled into all of the recruitment talk early, it can get very stressful and scary.

“I was a freshman when I was first looked at by scouts,” Rubino said. “The process was really stressful because it can feel like you may be making decisions about your future too early.”

Rubino is a star player on the WCHS girls lacrosse team. Rubino committed over the summer to Butler University to play on the Division I women’s lacrosse team.

“I started playing lacrosse when I was in second grade,” Rubino said. “I started off on regular rec teams and just fell in love with the sport.”

Starting out at a new school with new people can be very stressful. But, being part of a team prior to the start of school allows you to create friendships and bonds that you will be able to rely on throughout the stress of the upcoming school year. 

“My recruitment class is nine people including me,” Rubino said. “I am so excited about meeting new people and playing with a new team.”

Playing a sport in college, as great as it can be, can also bring some pressure as you can feel like you have some history to repeat and a legacy to uphold. 

“I am most excited to be part of the whole sports culture at University of North Carolina,” Rutberg. “I hope to contribute to their legacy of such a deep history of being successful as well as being a good student.”