Saturday, May 3
We flew out of Miami this morning. We're each hauling a huge bag of donation clothing and our own luggage- it was a packed van and long ride down. We landed in Nicaragua's capital, Managua around 1:00pm. It was only a two hour flight, which surprised me... a lot closer than I expected it to be. Our hotel is literally a 30-second walk from the front of the airport. The hotel is beautiful. It's partly outdoors and partly indoors. It has beautiful gardens and a couple pools. Kendall, Casey, and I decided to stick our feet in the pool and relax before our game. We left the hotel around 5:30pm and headed to the gym to take on Nicaragua's National Team. The gym is like nothing else we have here in the States. It was literally a huge warehouse with a concrete floor and thin layer of painted rubber. We thought it was hot outside, but inside the gym was steaming. You could tell from the start this was going to be a completely new experience for all of us.
One of the most outstanding characteristics that I noticed first was how nice and welcoming everyone was to us. We were getting ready for the game and this guy named Gorge came up and started talking to us. He was just excited to meet us and talk about the States and what Florida was like. It was very, very cool. We took on Nicaragua at 7:00pm and lost in three games. They were a good team and we struggled to gain our bearings in the new environment. It was a great day. Tomorrow we head to Granada! I will update there!
This season obviously did not finish how any of us wanted it to. However, this team has gone through a lot and this is by far the most talent we have ever had. We have today off for the holiday but all the girls are ready to start preparing for next season on Tuesday. We know exactly what we need to do to be a top team next year in the Sun Belt Conference. We all know that by this time next year we will not be sitting where we are now. Spring season is going to be challenging and competitive, but all the conditioning and court time is definitely going to make us a force next year. This group of girls is one of the best I've ever been a part of. I can' wait to see what the future holds for us. It's going to be great.
Thank you again to all of our fans. You made every home game exciting, even when we weren't technically in our "home" gym. We all appreciate your support and energy. We will see you next season!