After the dust settled from a very busy weekend of big matches and world travel I ask National Team member Cassidy Lichtman to "guest blog" for me, and view. This is how it went from the Serbian side of "The Canyon"
When Alisha first told us about the amazing story she had stumbled upon via Twitter, the whole team was moved. And when we get behind something we treat it with the same focus and passion that we bring to the court with us. After discussing the situation over lunch and what we could do, we settled on inviting Coach Toy to be an honorary coach for what was sure to be a battle against a strong Serbian team. After hammering out the logistics between matches and a few late night blog posts, we were all set to have Coach Toy on the virtual bench.
There was a slightly different feeling in the air before our match on Sunday. As we wrote T4T on our arms I think it gave us a moment to reflect. Not to drag attention away from the game ahead but rather to bring that attention to how special the opportunity was. To remember to be grateful that we got to step on the court that day and do what we love because that opportunity is not always promised to us. And to remember that the community involved in our sport is vast and diverse and infinitely inspiring.
Coach Toy tweeted in words of advice throughout the match. Hopefully all of you have read them because there were some keen insights in there and helpful tips for volleyball players of all ages and experience levels. I think my favorite was the one including #TheyAreRattled. Because they were at the time. And we weren't. Because why would we be? We came ready to battle and we had one of the leading experts on the subject at our side.
So, on behalf of the US National Team, I'd like to say thank you to Coach Toy for joining our staff for the day. It genuinely meant a great deal to all of us.