Tagged with: athletes coach disability Power Soccer sports teams
In order to be great you must learn how to be a team. Part of being a team is figuring out how to use each player’s individual strengths. I have nine unique athletes on my team, and I realized that although I have been writing about them for weeks, I have not introduced each player. So without further delay here is some insight into the nine “Me’s” that make up the “WE” that is the Lakeshore Power:
Nakisha is in her 14th season with the team and is someone who leads by example. Her positive attitude affects everyone in the best way. Nakisha said she plays because, “you get to show no matter your disability, you are the same as the next person.”
Courtney began playing eight years ago. Last year he took on the role of being the team’s goalie. He has mastered the art of being both a power and finesse player. Courtney said he plays because, “It’s fun to me and I watch a lot of competitive sports on TV and Power Soccer is a competitive sport I can play.”
Mike is in his second season with Lakeshore. He’s had such a presence on the court that this year he is also an assistant coach. His experience in other sports including basketball, tennis, and shooting, give him an insight into the game that has allowed him to be extremely successful. Mike said he plays because he “loves the challenge.”
Hank is the newest addition to Lakeshore’s team. In his first season he has shown great enthusiasm for the game. Hank says he plays Power Soccer because he, “loves driving his power chair and going fast.” With more practice and experience Hank will become a very strong player.
Randall is in his 12th season with the team. He is supportive of his teammates and very helpful, always asking if he can help set-up or take down equipment. Randall is not just a one-sport wonder – his fans can also watch him play for Lakeshore’s flag football team.
Andrew has been with the team for three years. I have watched him grow into a very mature player, developing the ability to use his chair with great finesse and skill. Andrew said he plays because, “I like the challenge of the game, especially because it is adaptable to my needs.”
Travaris is in his sixth season with Lakeshore. He is a leader on the court and well-respected throughout United States Power Soccer Association (USPSA). When asked why he plays Power Soccer he said, “I play Power Soccer because it’s challenging and fun. The bonds you create with other athletes in this sport are priceless. I enjoy the team around me. We all come from different walks of life but we all are a family and that can’t be duplicated anywhere else.”
Derek has been with the team for ten years. He is another player that leads by example and is highly respected throughout USPSA. Derek is an asset to have on the court, using his chair to create powerful kicks and precise passing. His knowledge and years of experience give him a confidence when playing that you cannot teach. Derek said he plays because, “I love competition.”
Daniel has been playing Power Soccer for four years. When asked why he plays the game, Daniel said, “I cannot be like the athletes on T.V., but then you hear about some that get injured or find out they have an illness. They keep playing, trying their best and living their lives. I’ve had to put some of my dreams on hold, but Power Soccer gives me hope, and I enjoy it.” Daniel is a positive presence for the team. He always tries his hardest and supports his team mates.