|May the odds be ever in your favor|
That's it. The cadence of GAME DAY. The beat of the music in my head phones on the way to the game that continued while cleats were laced up. The tempo of locker room chatter seemed to pick up gradually. Sometimes the music loud enough it tickled my ribs with over amplified bass. Shouts from the loud mouths on the team that pumped up some players and probably scared others to death. The rhythmic march of cleats heading down the tunnel to the field like a platoon ready for battle. The cadence of the 2 lines warming up in sync followed by the ball pinging from player to player. My heart raced to keep the tempo; my internal baton. I was the conductor. I never realized until this tournament how much that cadence was as much a part of my game day experience as the actual game. The sound comforted me and excited me in perfect sync. I am missing this game's cadence. I can't hear the beat and am struggling to find what the tempo is or should be. The lack of sound catches me off balance.
The last time I had that feeling was the day after September 11, 2001. I never realized how many airplanes flew over my house and how comforting that sound was, until it was gone. When the planes were grounded I seemed to hold my breath; everything feels unsettled.
|Waiting for the anthems|
I wonder if that's how these players feel when hearing devices come out and we head from the hotel lobby onto the bus. The bus ride is quiet, the locker room is quiet & I have to admit I feel a little off balance. Some of the sounds of the game, for everyone but the players slowly return. Cleats march to the field and balls finally get unleashed from their bag.
The national anthems play and the game ensues. It's a much quieter version of what I am accustomed hearing & it makes me more jumpy than I need to be. I can't feel the beat of the game. Am I missing something? I'm sure I am but Joy assures me we are good to go & she is right.
The first 20 minutes of the game was fairly even and good soccer by both teams.
As the match wore on, the DWNT began to string more passes together and generate a stronger presence in the attacking 1/3 of the field.
|Casey King fights for position|
The score was 2-0 which by all account is a solid lead... unless the opponent scores. Great Britain fired a laser free kick near the upper corner and if it wasn't for Meghan Maiwald coming up with a fantastic save, the score would have been 2-1.
In the end, Emily Cressy scored a hat trick and Gracie Fitzgerald found the back of the net to end the game 4-0. Yeah team! Best game for us as far as team possession, a tight defense and solid victory versus a good team.
|Starting XI vs. Great Britain|
|Emily Cressy receives game ball for Hat Trick #2|
No time to rehash our day off due to lots of business combined with zero down time. Lets just say, Chloe Rice was randomly selected to get an Audiogram test which took 4 hours and was with 3 other athletes. For me, it was the beginning of a joke. Four countries walk into the audiology center. Russia, Turkey, Great Britain and USA. 4 Players, 3 administrators who are deaf & One coach who is not and speaks English only and one Italian committee member who just wants to get a smoke as quick as he can? Who is in charge of getting the person at the front desk to understand what needs to be done? All of us and none of us.
The team headed to Agropoli for shopping and sight seeing. I'm sure you can find some photos here.
https://twitter.com/USDeaf_WNT as the team has posted quite a bit as of late.
Our match versus Italy is in a couple of hours. They are currently in 5th place and looking to find a way to represent their country despite a lackluster showing thus far.
I'll leave you with one photo that I see on a daily basis & it cracks me up. Players are always getting locked out of their rooms. They leave to grab a uniform, pick up a snack or say "hello" to family and the door is closed. Roommate is usually happily inside catching up on rest, texting their peeps, but no one can hear the knock. And, to make matters worse, at this hotel, WiiFi is rarely functioning. So no text to say, "Let me in." So ... it's just one more #deafprobs that they roll with. Usually they are sitting down with the "My roommate will figure it out eventually," look on their faces and patiently waiting for the door to open.
|Allie Galoob, Meghan Maiwald, Kate Ward: Anybody in there?|
We are excited for this game! I am going to listen harder today and seek out the cadence of this team. It is there, I just need to experience it in a different way. It will come to me, and although the song will be different, it will still be one I enjoy listening to.