For the boys’ wrestling team, Chop Wood Carry Water: How to Fall in Love with the Process of Becoming Great, the story of one boy’s journey to achieve his lifelong goal of becoming a samurai warrior, holds special meaning.
“We reference this book often,” David Barrett ’23 said during his keynote speech at the NMH Winter Athletics Banquet on March 24 in Alumni Hall. “We use it as a slogan at practice, and as a hashtag on our Instagram posts.
“In the process of getting better, you’re going to have to do things that are boring, hard, and repetitive,” he added. “The main point of the book is to fall in love with the process.”
That’s not always easy, noted Barrett, a three-time Class A Champion and Prep All-American. In his talk, he recalled how a mid-season win against a top-ranked opponent temporarily diverted his focus from his “process” — training, diet, and self-care — to “outcomes” and was quickly followed by an upsetting loss.
“I was crushed,” he said. “But, later that day when I spoke to my coaches, they reminded me to stay consistent, trust that this was just another step in my journey, and to grow from it.”
Barrett, who will continue his academic and athletic career at West Point in the fall, offered advice to his fellow NMH athletes: “Control the things you can control: your work ethic, attitude, and mentality. Learn that the result is a distraction. Whether or not you win or you lose is not important. Trust the process of becoming a better version of yourself, because it is you versus you. Now it’s time to get back to chopping wood and carrying water.”
Several NMH teams had notable achievements during the winter season.
Barrett helped lead the boys’ wrestling team to capturing second place at the New England Preparatory School Athletic Council (NEPSAC) championships and placing ninth at the National championships. The girls’ wrestling team came in fifth at New Englands and fourth at Nationals.
The girls’ varsity basketball team made the Class AA playoffs and won a seventh straight New England Eight championship under the leadership of head coach Grace Rehnquist, who achieved her 100th career win at NMH.
The swim team won the Wilmot Babcock Invitational for the first time in program history, and team captain Hazel Reeder ’23 was honored with the first NEPSAC Division I Andy Lowe Award, awarded to a student-athlete “who best embodies the values of generosity of spirit, humility, and relentlessness.”
The boys’ alpine team earned fourth place at the NEPSAC championship and came in second in the Mount Institute Ski League. The girls’ alpine earned second place at the New England championship for the 11th straight year and won the Mount Institute Ski League. The girls’ team is the only one in New England to have finished in the top five at NEPSAC championships every year for the past 12 years.
The boys’ hockey team qualified to compete in the NEPSAC Large School playoffs, and coach Kevin Cziepiel achieved his 100th career win at NMH.
Each athletics season, coaches choose student-athletes to receive coaches’ awards, based on the students’ contributions to their respective teams. The 2023 winter coaches’ awards recipients:
Girls’ Thirds Basketball Award
Hazel Handy ’23
Boys’ Thirds Basketball Award
Curtis Ho ’24
Girls’ JV Basketball Award
Lindsay Davenport ’24
Boys’ JV Basketball Award
Ethan Alfert ’23
Michael Corrigan Girls’ JV Ice Hockey Award
Macy Jonsson ’23
Boys’ JV Ice Hockey Award
Miles Frasca ’23
JV Swimming Award
Coco Yuen ’24
JV Wrestling Award
Karla Lazaro ’24
Girls’ Varsity Basketball Award
Sierra Bentley ’23
Jervis W. Burdick Jr. Boys’ Varsity Basketball Award
Andres Roman Journet ’23
Sarah P. Hoffman Girls’ Varsity Ice Hockey Award
Ava Romano ’23
Howard L. Jones Boys’ Varsity Ice Hockey Award
Cade DeWolf ’23
Grace Robertson Girls’ Varsity Swimming Award
Sophia Woo ’23
Boys’ Varsity Swimming Award
Kelvin Cheung ’25
Girls’ Varsity Nordic Skiing Award
Sasa Kolowrat ’24
Sayde and David Hausen Boys’ Nordic Skiing Award
Albert Xie ’23
Girls’ Varsity Alpine Skiing Award
Sage Newman ’23
Boys’ Varsity Alpine Skiing Award
Alex McCullough ’23
L. Todd Duncan Wrestling Award
David Barrett ’23
See photos of the 2023 Winter Athletics Banquet.