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Albertsons Big Deal of the Week: Luke Tapp (Rigby)
From track star to esteemed flautist, Luke Tapp won't soon forget his time at Rigby High School
Published: 6/11/2020 11:37:03 AM

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Name: Luke Tapp
School: Rigby High School
Grade: Senior
Sport: Track and Field
Position: Sprints
How did you first get interested in your sport? 

 I first became interested in track in middle school. My gym teacher had suggested I run for the team and some of my classmates kept saying I should as well.

If you play other sports, which is your favorite?

I also do cross country in the fall. Track is my favorite because I am more competitive as a sprinter but I enjoyed every minute of cross country. I got to be a part of a really unique group of young men that made an amazing team.
What’s the most valuable lesson you’ve learned from high school sports?

The number one most important thing I learned from high school sports is that you never give up, no matter how hard the task at hand or how much adversity you are facing at that time. Giving up simply isn't an option.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received? Who gave it to you?

Probably the best advice I had came from Coach Parrish my junior year. I was really struggling  just getting along with my mom because we're just so different. One day, it was really bugging me before practice and he noticed. He stopped me in the hall and in five minutes he was able to figure out what was wrong and tell me exactly what I needed to hear that really helped me see where my mom was coming from.
What has been your favorite high school memory so far?

It's definitely been all the different competitions for track and cross country, especially the travel meets where you get to spend the full weekend with your team.
What coaches or teachers have made the biggest impact on your athletic career?

There are a lot of amazing coaches and teachers at Rigby. For starters, Coach Parrish has made a huge impact, not only by making me a better athlete but by making me a better person. I can say that about every one of my coaches. Whether you need advice on your training routine or have a personal question, his door is always open. 
Coach Thompson has been coaching at Rigby for the longest, which means he knows all the tricks. He knows exactly how to get you to perform at your best level and that's what he loves to do for everyone on his time, not just the ones that might win him a trophy. 
Next is everyone's favorite, Coach Shippen, a former decathlete and a good one at that. Because he did just about every event, he can also coach just about every event. Shippen definitely had a huge impact on me, especially because of his work ethic and coaching style. He's a firm believer that if you work harder than your competition, you will be better than your competition regardless of talent. Not only is Shippen a good coach, but he's enjoyable to be around. Everyone on our team can agree on one thing: burnouts suck, but they're a million times better with coach Shippen cheering you on. 
Last but not least is Coach Seward. Seward is a very factual and logical coach which is why she is so good at coaching. She’s not afraid to tell it to you straight, and I know for a fact that when my teammates or I were being idiots and needed to be set straight, hearing it from Seward helped us focus on what was important and brought us back into reality quickly.
The coaches at Rigby aren't the only ones who will impact your athletic career, though. I've had many teachers that are greatly invested in what's going on where they work and take a great interest in their students' extracurricular activities, not just the athletes. Out of all of the teachers at Rigby, Mr. Johnson has definitely influenced my athletic career the most. I never took any of his classes until my senior year, but as soon as I qualified for state my freshman year, he knew who I was and I could always hear him when he was cheering me on during my competitions. Mr. Johnson gets to know his students quickly and takes great interest in what they do. He has a true desire to see every one of them succeed and he tries to help them in any way he can.
Which teammates have you really connected with during high school? 
I've connected with a lot of my teammates the last four years. There were my 4x8 and 4x4 relay teams Dalton Johnson, Parker Miskin, Trenton and Ethan Clark were all amazing to compete with because they made it enjoyable. We always found something to joke about even if we got our butts kicked. Next, there is Nate Franz. He was the best shot putter Rigby ever had, but he never let it get to his head. I wish I had as much humility as he did. He always asked how you did after a competition, regardless where you stood on the teams rankings. I also really connected with my distance/cross country teammates, Danny Yates, Mason Chandler, Nathan Fielding, Ben Ricks, Eric Eastin, Tommy Berger and Trevor Bradley. Over the last fall we grew into much more than a team. We were brothers. We'd always cheer each other on and have a good time. Over the winter, I got the privilege to keep training with them as well as some of my fellow sprinters. Ethan Reeser, Seth Beddes, Toric Nuffer, and Jose Mondragon are some of the hardest workers I'll ever know and they will always have my respect. Finally, my favorite teammate to compete with and one of my best friends was Joe Campbell. He's serving a full time LDS mission in Denver right now, so he probably won't see this, but Joe helped push me to be the best and always knew how to have a fun time or what to say when life got rough. 
Everyone I've trained and competed with has taught me something that I will be able to use for the rest of my life. I deeply appreciate everything they've done for me and wish them all the best.
What’s something most people don’t know about you?
I actually did band in middle school and most of high school. People said I was stupid for picking the flute, but let me just say I had more girls’ numbers than anyone my freshman year, so who's laughing now?
What would you like to see to all the other Idaho athletes who had their season cut short?
To all the underclassmen, start working towards your goals and start now. My only regret from high school is not giving it my all my freshman year. If I had put more energy into my grades and been as dedicated to my sport then as I am now, paying for college and figuring out the next steps in my life would be a lot easier. Take advantage of all the extra downtime you have right now to make yourself a better version of you.
To my fellow seniors just because our senior season is gone doesn't mean we have to stop doing what we love. I wish I had gotten one more trip to Boise and a shot at a trophy as much as anyone, but now we can do the activities we love without the stress of messing up and letting our teammates down. It's not what we wanted but we should still take advantage of it.


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