“Coach, I can use your help.”

“Coach, I can use your help.”

Never in my life did I ever expect  to hear those words…….

At least not from the source.

Today was the last day of our 2015 tennis season.  I took two girls to the regional tournament.  During the coaches meeting, we voted on seeding the ladies.  I nominated one of my girls and she wound up #4.  The other #8.  I was pleased with the results.

When it was time for doubles, one of my colleague coaches had a team he really wanted to get placed #3 or #4.  We felt very much at a disadvantage because so many of the teams had a close knit grouping.  After other coaches spoke in favor of rival nominations, I felt it was time to help my colleague.  I spoke from my heart about his girls, the character and level of play they brought to the court. He won the vote at #4 for his doubles team.  “Thank you.  I really appreciate that.”

During the contest during the day, several colleagues came to watch my girls and offered advice to help them.  “Coach, I can use your help.  How do you do it?  How do you create a team like you have?”  This coach has girls that go to the singles state tournament every single year.  This really confused me.  I asked him to explain.

“I have 9 girls that play on a team.  You have one team with 10 girls on it” was his reply.  “Your girls support each other on and off the court.  How do you get them to do that?”

This is the third time this year I have heard from coaches about the character of the team.  But not the last.  During my #1’s contest, a player from one of the ‘country club’ schools (as I call them) said, “I really would like to play her. She is so nice.  It would be fun to play her.”

My girls continue to bless me on and off the court.  No, we did not win and advance to the state playoffs. But, my girls won something more valuable: respect of rivals and a place in my heart forever.  Love you girls.  Thank you.

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