The value of sportsmanship in the nation


File Photo/The Lion's Roar

The women’s soccer team was recognized for its notable sportsmanship by receiving the United Soccer Coaches Team Ethics and Sportsmanship Award. The team was one of 11 universities in the nation to receive this honor.

The university women’s soccer team has made itself known for its gracious treatment towards others by receiving the United Soccer Coaches Team Ethics and Sportsmanship Award.

This award is given to schools who show exemplary sportsmanship as well as receive few yellow cards.

Christopher McBride, soccer head coach, shared the magnitude of the award. 

“To be one of the 11 schools to receive this award is a great honor,” expressed McBride. “We try every day to be a team of great character who are disciplined and play the game in a sporting manner.”

During the 2018 season, the women’s soccer team returned to the Southland Conference Tournament and made a name for itself. With three players making the All-Southland Conference team, two players named as the Southland Conference Player of the Week, and 13 players earning at least a 3.5 GPA, the answer to their success is found within their code of conduct.

Megan Gordon, a sophomore midfielder, discussed how the respect within the team contributed to receiving the award.

“It’s so rewarding to have our sportsmanship recognized across the nation,” shared Gordon. “This team is incredible. Everyone works for each other and has so much respect towards one another, and that shows in how we play. When we play other teams, the ultimate goal is to compete to be the best, but as a team, we do that in the right manner, so receiving this award to show what our team represents is amazing.”

According to Gordon, being a good sport is crucial to the team’s success.

“I believe respect and sportsmanship should be shown by all teams, so winning an award like this should prove to others the importance of it and what our program is about,” said Gordon. “The strides forward we are taking as a program and team also should highlight to teams how it can positively impact the success of the team.”

The team dynamic and coaches help the team manage a balance of being civil in the field while playing the sport.

“Our coaches play a big role in the values they expect us to have and show,” shared Gordon. “Most importantly we all respect each other as teammates. We hold ourselves accountable for our actions and have high expectations for one another. Consequently, when it comes to playing oppositions, we want that to be reciprocated, so yes, we play with tenacity and passion, but it is shown in the right way.”

The team holds itself to the code of the golden rule: treat others as you would like to be treated.

For McBride, the character of his players makes the job remarkably easier.

“We haven’t made a lot of changes,” explained McBride. “The team we have are a great group of young women. We try to reinforce good behaviors and positive actions on and off the field to allow us to be role models for young children watching the game.”

Being awarded the United Soccer Coaches Team Ethics and Sportsmanship Award allowed the team to stand out among the nation for its unity and character. This award will further motivate the players to perform to the best of their abilities while representing the university well.

McBride hopes that the team members continue to show the same kind of attitude and hold themselves up to the name they have made for themselves.

“We hope we give the university a good name and image by the way we conduct ourselves on and off the field,” said McBride.