Monday, May 14, 2007

Wellesley Alumni Game

We had our annual Alumni game yesterday. Beautiful weather this year. Last year it rained so much we had to play indoors. This year we had eight alumni ranging from the class of 02 to grads from last year. The alumni game is an important day for the team as it is a chance for connection. New players to the team get a chance to see where the foundation of the team comes from. Seniors get a chance to demonstrate the work that has taken place over the past years. The alumni get to reconnect with the team and see the changes that have taken place since they graduated. It is nice to visit with the alums. Folks are still playing, working, traveling, etc. I have been thinking a lot about values over the last week or so, and the alumni game is a time to be reminded that core values run through the years like a stream. The sense of community, respect, and fun that were important to the team over 5 years ago are still part of the basic make-up of the team today. Probably most importantly, everyone can check in on the perspective that the team is bigger than all of us and the game is a chance to celebrate our accomplishments and the investment that everyone has made.

It is also a bittersweet day, of course, as it marks the last time we will have our seniors as part of the team. This group of seniors, especially Tyke, Ronnie, Ace, Langdon, and Jess, should take a great deal of pride in the way the team has progressed over the last four years. Four years ago we were a young team that barely qualified for Regionals. These seniors have guided the team to a time of growth in terms of numbers, and, of course, great accomplishments on the field. To leave the organization in much better shape than when they arrived should be a source of pride.

I will, in particular, miss Tyke very much. Tyke pretty much "bought in" to Ultimate from the get go, and her enthusiasm and hard work was for me a great source of validation as we began to build the program up after the spring of 03. As I have said before, her selfless approach after her knee injury this past fall is a remarkable testament to courage, discipline, and sense of team. Tyke would make any coach feel proud and I was lucky to have worked with her for 4 great years. All of our seniors brought something to the team, and as every year, it is hard to imagine the Whips without Ronnie's sense of humor and unstoppable cuts at high stall counts, Langdon's calm leadership, Jess's throws, and Ace's play against a zone offense. We will get a chance to be reminded of these things when they return as alums in subsequent years.


gapoole said...

What was the score?

gcooke said...

Hey Glenn,

I left at half(Mother's Day)....alums were up 8-5. I believe the only time the team won was two years ago in a close game............