Lay ups and Lay downs

Our story on the Road to Palarong Pambansa 2019

By Rose-Ann Marie R. Manalili

To create an indispensable team we need the right mixes of student-athletes’ and coaches’ attitude, commitment, and grit towards the ultimate common end goal – to claim victory in the battle.

But winning in a battle isn’t the be-all, end-all in sports. For us, what’s more important are the lessons learned to advance to the next level. Yes, the winning part is just a bonus after our long hours of die-hard trainings and tune-up games.  Here is the rarely unheard story of our 3x3 Basketball girls’ journey to Davao!

Balanga City is just a small division compared to other divisions in Region III. Like David in the Bible story, we are but tiny and feeble on the outside but brave and sturdy on the inside, for we never back off to the Goliath-like divisions such as Bulacan and Bataan in a face off. They were really hard to defeat in the field of sports. They dominate almost all the sport categories to represent Central Luzon in the Palarong Pambansa in the past years and Balanga City would not even stand a chance to become part of the delegation – not until now. So, as a coach, I have three insights gained in our battle against the giants and claimed a spot to represent the region this 2019 Palarong Pambansa.

The Power of Words

Our words have the power to make or break us. This is an insight pointed out to us by Dr. Armando C. Capili, our Assistant Schools Division Superintendent. And as a coach, I realized that my thoughts, words, and actions greatly affect my team. That’s why at the beginning of the division intensive training, I taught my student-athletes to always declare victory even before the tournament begins. We would tease one another to see them in Davao, but, really that teasing is part of programming our minds and hearts to fight and win our battles.

This conditioning program through words would teach our hearts to have the courage to face our opponents and would direct our bodies to act accordingly in order to win.

Discipline + Respect = Triumph

In sports, it is always magnified the importance of sportsmanship and camaraderie. Yes, that there will always be winners and losers but the end result won’t define us as persons, being disciplined and respectful will. These words are our Schools Division Superintendent Dr. Carolina S. Violeta’s pabaon for us before leaving off to Zambales for the CLRAA 2019.

I could still remember how the world admired the defeated Japanese in the World Cup 2018 by leaving their changing room spotless and with a thank you note. I continuously remind my student-athletes that the discipline showed by these Japanese athletes is a must to follow for such discipline is a hallmark of a real athlete. What I mean is, discipline in all aspect – cleanliness in their surrounding or environment particularly in their living quarters; training, whether someone is supervising them or no one is around they would still do their job right, and give their best; and be self-motivated to improve their skills.

You and I are part of the Journey

Our victory is everyone’s victory. Yes, we are all in this together: the student-athletes, you as their teacher, and I as their coach. Without your full support to let these students play their best shot, we won’t be able to win the tournament.

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