Springer Seeking Solitude on the Court
ROSEMONT, Pa. – Rosemont College's Fall Break began last weekend. With the school shutdown, many
student-athletes travel home to recharge before returning to campus to close out the
fall semester. While many of her fellow students enjoy the comforts of home, freshman
Alyssa Springer remains on campus where she and the Ravens will host two volleyball matches.
For many freshman, the transition from high school to collegiate student-athlete can be difficult to manage. Springer, a native of Baytown, Texas, the sixth-largest city in the Houston metropolitan area, has handled that challenge with aplomb, starting every match for the Ravens all the while knowing that her hometown was underwater.
"It's been almost a month since the hurricane hit Baytown, Houston, and the water level just got low enough to open the streets there", said Springer. "Baytown, we're right on the bay and there are lots of bayous. The water level just got so high, it took many houses out."
Springer's mother was on the ride-out crew at the hospital in Baytown where she was flooded in. For four days, she had to eat and sleep at the hospital while at the same time, Springer's father and sister were trapped in their home. Fortunately, they were safe, but things grew dire for the freshman's uncle who was trapped in his own home with limited resources.
"It was sad", she said. "I saw him posting on Facebook saying he was running low on food and asking if there was anyone who could come help. Seeing his post really hurt."
In an act that speaks volumes about the Houston community during this time, Springer's uncle opened his home after the waters rescinded. Without hesitating, he offered a place to sleep and showers to those in need. While Springer's family was able to weather the storm without much damage to their home, many in Baytown were not as fortunate.
"Although my family and my house were not really affected, there are a lot of people I know whose houses were completely washed away or had to be torn down from the flooding", said Springer before sharing how the water levels were so high in her best friend's neighborhood that people were coming down the streets in boats to evacuate others from their homes.
It has been difficult for the freshman to see friends living in hotels because they lost their homes.
"It was historical flooding like we've never seen before", she explained. "We're used to flooding, it floods like every other week, but this is something we were not ready for. When the last hurricane hit, our roof caved and we had a waterfall going through our house. It's hard to be away and not know how everything is."
To distract herself from the news back home, Springer has settled in to her "home away from home" at Rosemont. Classes and volleyball have given her something positive to focus on and the friends she has been making have provided her with a good support system. Coaches and teammates are always making sure she is doing alright and isn't feeling homesick.