After going 0-2 in our first two non-conference games, we knew our next opponent, Howard, was a game we not only held the odds to win, but was also a game we could use as a turning point in our not-so-good first step in to the fall season. From the kickoff, it was clear that we held the upper hand in ability, but would still need to work hard to come out with a win. Then, about twenty minutes in, I watched one of our defenders, and one of my classmates, go into a tackle that ended in a clap the entire stadium could hear. It seemed so fast. One second she was fine, sliding in to any normal tackle, and the next she was shaking her head with a face that screamed utter defeat. Knowing her season was over, Dani had her leg splinted on the side of the field, and was off to the emergency room by halftime. The second half took what felt like an eternity, ultimately ending in a 1-0 victory. But as the game came to a close and news from the hospital reached our trainer, it set in that we would now have to fill yet another position in our back line, and the person I had played next to my entire college career would not return to the field until at least the following year.
The first game after Dani had a rod surgically inserted into her broken leg, we played Liberty. I was shocked at how off I felt, I mean I knew it would be weird as a center back playing without my usual left back, but it didn’t strike me exactly how well I had gotten accustomed to the back line including Dani. In the following game against La Salle, however, it dawned on me that even after getting a new coach, and welcoming a third of our team, and losing a starting defender, that if we believe in our potential we can succeed. The same team that conceded two goals in the first fifteen minutes of the game came out and scored two goals in two minutes to bring the game to overtime. I realized that now more than ever is each person's chance to step up and show that even in the face of change and negative odds that together we are a team that will not stand down.
Believe. Win. Succeed.