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Female Student-Athlete: Germantown Friends’ Barstow follows, sets the good example

Thursday, 24th April 2008

Categories Girl's/Women's, High School  

By Bridget Algeo, Posted 4/24/08

Well before Germantown Friends School attacker Mariah Barstow took to the playing fields, she learned a valuable lesson about sportsmanship from watching her older brother play sports.

Even though she didn’t play the game, she would still get in line afterward to shake the hands of her sibling’s opponents.

Barstow, in fact, credits both her brother and parents for teaching her many of life’s lessons.

“My parents and my brother are very supportive and successful. They’ve taught me what’s important in life,” says Barstow, who, as a top student at Germantown Friends, has also been a three-sport captain as a senior.

It seems that Barstow – the Laxzilla/ Female Student-Athlete of the Week – doesn’t have to look far to find sources of inspiration in her life.

On the lacrosse field, one such person is first-year GFS coach Katie Bergstrom.

“She is great,” Barstow said. “She’s very intense and comes to practice really, really excited. Her intensity motivates us.”

Indeed, the Tigers are off to a 2-1 start this season in Friends School League games (5-5 overall), with, as Barstow indicates, hopes for a Friends League title.

“Our team really connects well,” said an optimistic Barstow of her squad. “We really use everyone, and we work together. We have balance.”

Bergstrom attributes much of the team’s success to her captain.

“She is a real leader on attack,” says Bergstrom of Barstow, citing her 24 goals and 5 assists this season.

Next fall, Barstow expects to bring her brand of play to Bates College, a Division III program in Lewiston, Maine. Its academic reputation and personable atmosphere drew Barstow to its campus.

In Barstow, Bates will enroll a scholar-athlete with diverse interests, such as art and photography, and a history of leadership on the athletic field, as evidenced in her role as President of the Athletic Council.

They will also gain an all-league caliber athlete in three sports (also squash and soccer) with a strong intent to study science, particularly biology.

Again, Barstow was inspired by the people surrounding her, namely three high school science teachers who together served as catalysts for her choice of collegiate study.

Last winter, her intended course led the tri-sport athlete into the halls of Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, where Barstow served as an intern during her junior year.

Barstow, who enjoys working with children in various settings, was particularly impacted by the experience of witnessing a neo-natal surgery. The inspirational experience is one she won’t forget as she prepares for her own career in the sciences.

“Seeing them saving a baby’s life was pretty incredible,” said Barstow. “It made me see how wonderful science can be.”

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