Meet the Athlete: Declan Gaines


Mya Stanberry

Sophomore quarterback Declan Gaines examines the field Sept. 19. Gaines recently became the starting quarterback for the Orioles.

Anya Panday

How long have you been playing football?

This will be my second year playing football.

How’s the season going?

I think the season started a little rough, but the team is getting it together now; we’re getting locked in and focused.

What are your goals for this season?

My goal for this season is definitely to help my team win more games and to improve on both a personal level (as a player) and as a team.

How does it feel to be the varsity quarterback as a sophomore?

It feels really good. A lot of responsibility comes with it, but it’s a great learning opportunity — it’s taught me a lot.

How are you adjusting to playing on varsity?

I’m adjusting pretty well. I think the game’s speed is a big adjustment, but everyday it’s getting a little better and more manageable. In each game, I learn something new.

Has anyone supported you during this transition?

Definitely the coaches — they have supported me a lot. They help me figure out plays and adjust to the speed of varsity games. The captains are also very supportive and they help me out a lot. They’ve given me a lot of tips on how to calm down and stay calm in the pocket.

What’s the most challenging part of being the varsity quarterback?

The hardest part is adjusting to what the defense is doing and trying to play the game the best I can with what’s given to me — I have to be very versatile.

What’s your favorite part of being the varsity quarterback?

My favorite part of being the quarterback is definitely all the responsibilities I have on offense and my team.

What’s the most important thing you’ve gotten out of this experience?

I’ve definitely become more resilient. I’m better at pushing through things, even when they’re hard.