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Better Than a Win: A Resounding Compliment from a Referee

Local high school soccer team scores something bigger than a win.

In the realm of high school sports, players and spectators can get caught up in the “Go-Fight-Win” mentality. Sometimes, the pursuit of winning can overshadow good sportsmanship.

Our interscholastic athletics program at The Fulton School focuses on building people first, then on building players. Athletics provide an opportunity for students to learn how to succeed in a competitive environment and work together as a team.

Because athletics are a central part of our curriculum, high school students are required to play one varsity sport per year. Many of our athletes compete in sports that they have never played before, but they have a great time learning new skills and contributing to a team.

Recently, we received a note from a Missouri State High School Athletic Association (MSHSAA) referee that officiated one of our boys’ varsity soccer games. We share this with you because we are so proud of our team and our coach, Kyle Magee.

“This is the second time that I have officiated for [The Fulton School at] St. Albans, and I am very impressed by the way in which they handled themselves throughout the game. There was a wreck on the highway that slowed their arrival for the contest as well as a need to hurry the game due to impending bad weather. The athletes quickly took to the field once their bus arrived, performed an abbreviated warm-up, and were ready to go without complaint or question. I found all of the athletes were positive and respectful throughout the match and put in a great workrate on a hot day with few subs. Each player participated to their fullest ability and they supported and passed to all players regardless of skill level or physical ability. The coach is supportive and gave good instruction without berating or belittling his players. Although this is a smaller school, I felt they performed and represented some of the best aspects of soccer in my four years of officiating… they should be commended for their hard work and the coach for instilling the correct desire to improve as well as positive behavior and ethics.

This is so much bigger than winning.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Janet Roberts September 22, 2012 at 01:32 AM
Love the story and the fact that the official took the time to write the letter. Hopefully other coaches and teams will realize that this is really what sportsmen are like.

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