By Andrew Garda

Montclair High school senior – and brand new graduate – Charlotte Carr may not have had a final softball season as a Mountie, but she’s still scratching that competitive itch.

“I've been learning a bunch of new card games,” said Carr, who will be attending Lehigh University to continue her education. “I've always been meaning to learn more. So, every night with my family, we try a new card game and decide if we like it.”

Carr and her family have recently been enjoying a game called Cabo.

“Basically, you start with four cards and you can play with like three to five people,” she explained. “You can only see your first two cards. The other two cards are a mystery and the object of the game is to have the lowest overall score at the end of the game.”

The game ends when a player thinks they have the lowest score and says “Cabo.”

Carr said there are a lot of variations to the game and they are working through all of them.

She’s also working her way through re-reading the Harry Potter novels and The Hunger Games trilogy, as well as biking and walking around town more and re-painting the basement.

“It's kind of like, a rundown color,” she said. “Like, the paint is chipping. So, I've been doing that with my sisters and just trying to do like a lot of like little projects here and there. [Then] I can wake up every day and be like, okay, I'm going to accomplish something today.”

Like every other spring athlete, Carr was disappointed not to get her last season as a High School student and was doubly disappointed because she will not be playing at Lehigh.

There is still the possibility of a little softball —Carr said MHS coach Michael Goldstein was trying to find a way to do a summer league for the players — and regardless, her team and the sport is still part of her life.

“We actually had our senior night [on June 8], which was organized by one of my fellow captains, Emily [Amirata], because she's the only [captain] that's not a senior,” Carr said. “That was really great. And we've also been doing a lot of texts in our group chat, kind of just like checking up on people.”

MHS 2020 graduate Charlotte Carr gets ready to field a ball at third base.
MHS 2020 graduate Charlotte Carr gets ready to field a ball at third base.

Carr said Goldstein has also been encouraging the team to stay in shape, both for a potential summer league as well as just to stay healthy.

“He's really committed to making sure that we're still staying active and like doing some work in our backyards,” Carr said. “Like my sister also plays softball, so we've been setting up the ball net and doing some hitting practice a couple times a week, just so our muscles are still used to like hitting mechanics.”

Carr comes from a strong softball family, one which has always been supportive of her interest in the sport.

“My parents are really into it too, they're always like “come on, let's do a catch!” It's helpful,” Carr said, adding that her mom played softball in high school as well, though there was never any pressure on Carr to follow in her footsteps.

What caught Carr’s attention about softball is the intricacy of it.

“All the rules are very complicated and every year, I pick up another skill or another rule, and it just seems like every time you like graduate into a new level,” she said. “From middle school to high school, I saw a lot of differences in the type of play or just different like trick plays.”

While Carr is still in contact with her teammates, she also stays in touch with her friends outside of the sport.

“We've been doing some social distancing activities,” Carr said. “We’ll meet up in a park and like lay out blankets and just chat. Or, like, some people are driving by my house and think “Oh, let’s stop by for a minute to chat.” And then they sit on  the steps leading up to my house and I sit on my stoop and we talk from a distance.”

For Carr, when it comes to both her friends and teammates, keeping in touch is important.

2020 MHS graduate Charlotte Carr makes a play at third in 2017.
2020 MHS graduate Charlotte Carr makes a play at third in 2017.

“My teammates and my friends have definitely been an important part of my everyday thing,” Carr said. “I think that'd be going insane with [just] my family, even though I love them and we've been having a good time. I definitely do need like the social interaction with my friends too.”

That will probably stay the case when Carr is finally able to go to Lehigh, where she’ll attend the College of Arts and Sciences as she decides what to major in.

“I have a couple broad interests, but I wasn't specifically interested in any one thing,” Carr said. “I have been interested in like the health field a little bit. So maybe something with public health. [Lehigh] actually just opened a School of Health, so if I decide that that is the career path that I want, then I could transfer into the School of Health.”

Carr gained interest in the health field while working at Mountainside Hospital last year.

Still she is open to a lot of different paths.

“I’m also interested in psychology or like maybe journalism because my dad's in communications,” she said. “I think that writing is the one thing that I've been like pretty good at throughout high school, so that's why I went with College of Arts and Sciences because I knew that I could probably combine my interest in some way [there].”