Making History, a Note From Coach Cotter Before the First-Ever Game
The first team sport at St. Ambrose Academy was Girls Basketball. Eight girls made history on December 3, 2007, when they took the court for the first time. Coach Cotter sent the St. Ambrose community this note before this first game:
The Maiden Voyage
Today is a great day for us to begin this new adventure. It is the Feast Day of Saint Francis Xavier, the great missionary priest who traveled into unfamiliar territory and uncharted waters to do God’s work. For most of our girls, it is the same when it comes to the sport of basketball. Until last week our team had never even seen a basketball game. Without a doubt in every game this season we will be the underdogs and will play against girls who have between 3-8 years of organized basketball experience. But that is OK.
Our goal for this year was to put a uniformed team from St. Ambrose Academy on the floor to play the game of basketball. Tonight that will happen. Tonight at the very moment our girls run onto the floor at the Bishop O’Connor Center wearing their St. Ambrose Academy jerseys we will have achieved our first victory – it will be “the cake” – and every point, and every rebound that follows will be just another bit of icing on that victorious cake. I assure you we will play hard and we will play to win – but the final score really won’t matter all that much. In less than ten weeks time our girls with their big commitment have become a high school basketball team. And it is a team we can all wrap ourselves around and be proud of.
This is a victory. We thank God for this victory and all the blessings and victories that are just around the corner. It is a privilege to witness history, to be part of history and to make history. Tonight this will happen. Five, ten, twenty years from now, remember that it started with these girls – “our girls” – tonight. Someday when St. Ambrose Academy wins its first State Championship, remember that it all started with our girls tonight. So congratulations and thank you, Theresa, Mary, Susie, Anna, Lucy, Carrie, Mimi and Maeve. We all love you and we’ll see you tonight.
Coach Eddie Cotter
St. Ambrose – pray for us!
Our Lady of Victory – pray for us!
December 3, 2007
A senior writes,
The St. Ambrose girl’s basketball team is committed to each other, its what keeps our team together and strong. Basketball practice is not just about running through drills or enhancing our skills, but also about developing our relations to each other. There are a few girls on the team who have actually had basketball experience, the rest of us brought whatever experience we had, in anything, to the court. Everyone gave it their all, for the sake of each other and the team. I started basketball freshman year without any athletic experience at all. I come from an artistic family, so I had spent more time finger painting in my life than I had even thinking about sports. I can still hear Mr. Cotter explaining to me how lay-ups were like painting a picture, and they’ve made sense ever since. To be on this team gave me more than just experience and taught me more than just basketball. To be on this team taught me fortitude, and that in the end the numbers on the scoreboard are goals for the next game, and the only fight to win is that of our own hearts.