March 20, 2013
ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- Sophomore Erin Meador (Clifton, Va.) writes Wednesday's NCAA Tournament diary for the three-time Patriot League-champion Navy women's basketball team.
"You can see it in their eyes. In the sweat filled towels hanging off the chairs. It's in Kara's fist as she beats it against her chest after hitting a crucial shot. In Chloe's long held follow through. It's in Audrey's emotional fist pump backpedaling down the court. In the hang time every member of the bench gets while celebrating huge plays. You can hear it in Jade's voice any time she talks basketball. It's in offensive rebound after offensive rebound Chelsea snags during practice. In Alix sacrificing her body for a loose ball. You can see it in the competitive nature brought to every drill of every practice. It's in their love to win, but more than that, their hate to lose mentality. It's the most obvious in the smiles on their faces after multiple sprints, long lifts, and grueling practices. The smile that lets you know they love what they're doing. It's their passion.
"It's not just my teammates passion for working hard and striving to be successful that makes Navy Women's Basketball such a special program, it's the passion that each and every member has for one another. I got chills at the practice before the championship because my teammate's love for basketball was displayed so obviously through their work ethic and body language. This passion has been prominently displayed over the past week. It was such a special moment winning the Patriot League Tournament, and watching the selection show Monday night. These moments seemed even sweeter because they were shared in the embrace of those we leaned on throughout our journey; our teammates, our coaches and staff, and our fans. I felt the passion of our team as soon as our name appeared on the TV at the selection show. There was so much love and pride radiating from the room, only interrupted by a silent knowledge that Navy Women's Basketball was all business from that moment until the horn sounds Sunday afternoon.
"Today (Tuesday) we had an Olympiad practice. This consists of the team being split into three different teams, each with a unique theme and costumes. Throughout practice these three teams compete in numerous drills to be crowned Olympiad Champion. Although this practice had a fun and quirky theme to it every player was all in, competing with focus, toughness, and pride. The Olympiad came down to the last drill, the closest it has been in years! The Olympiad reinforced how close and fun-loving our team is. We had a blast with team names and themes, as we were getting excited to play in the NCAA tournament this weekend!
"It is going to be difficult for me to focus on anything except preparing to play Kentucky for the rest of this week (sorry professors!). My teammates and I couldn't be more excited, focused and ready to prepare for the big dance this week. We can't wait to head up to New York and take care of business. Our passion has taken us this far and it isn't dying down anytime soon!"
GO NAVY! BEAT KENTUCKY!