Aiming High in School, Work and Sports
Garrett Hoover, a senior at West Linn High School, is a defenseman for the lacrosse team, but that's not the extent of his ambition. In addition to training for and then playing lacrosse in the spring, Garrett has a full schedule of challenging AP and honors classes as well as a part-time job as an independent landscaper and facilities worker. Installing sprinkler systems, weeding garden beds, tearing down walls and cleaning floors have taught him a lot about hard work and self-discipline.
Garrett has been playing lacrosse since 7th grade, including during his freshman year at Canby High when he played for the varsity team alongside his brother, his role model in life and sports.
"My brother has always pushed me to be a better athlete and person," said Garrett. "Halston is currently a midshipman at the United States Naval Academy, and he taught me how to work hard on and off the field."
He remembers one tough spot in particular that his brother coached him through.
"I was doing a book project that was due Monday, but that weekend I had so many different events that by the time I got started, it was late Sunday evening. I considered simply doing my other homework and begging my teacher for an extension. Then my brother walked in the room. He told me something that I remember when it gets really hard: ‘If you do what others won't do today, you will be able to do what they can't tomorrow.' So I stayed up a few more hours on that project, and at the end I felt a lot better than if I had just talked to the teacher."
That stick-to-it attitude served Garrett and the Lions well last year, when they earned West Linn its fourth state championship. It also helped them exceed their fundraising goal of $10,000 by 50 percent to pay for an annual trip to Florida that spring. There they challenged themselves by playing teams outside their conference.
"One of the biggest things that lacrosse has taught me is the importance of hard work and having battle buddies by your side," Garrett said. "I intend to serve as an Army officer once I finish college, and the skills that playing lacrosse have taught me apply well to the military field."
Their high ambitions paid off auspiciously for the Lions in their first conference game on April 13, in which they beat the Clackamas High School Cavaliers 15-3.
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