Ladyjacks Rally Around Tragedy - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

1/21/2008 - Nacogdoches

Ladyjacks Rally Around Tragedy

By: Coleman Swierc

With the season well under way, the SFA Ladyjack basketball team may have just endured the toughest stretch all year.

Playing just two games,the Ladyjacks suffered 4 losses.

"I have never had a week like last week as a coach, and I don't know if anything prepares you for it, you just hope and pray, that you can be there and be strong for your team," said head coach Lee Ann Riley.

Just over a week ago, junior Jessica Gaines, lost one of the biggest influences in her life, her grandfather.

Then life, dealt the Ladyjacks another cruel blow. Last Monday, freshman Decreasha Goodner learned that her father and mentor, had died from a heartattack.

On the road and away from home, the Jacks looked for the one place that life couldn't touch them...

"The court can be your sanctuary, it is a place you can go out and let all of your emotions out on the court, if you are angry, sad, it can be a release for you," said Riley.

And the Ladyjacks have rallied, around their coach and each other.

Riley added, "When you go through a loss, you need somebody to lean on, you have to keep on living, life is not always fair, and our whole team and even other parents have been phenomenal throughout this in rallying around and being their for these players."

Only time will tell the strength of the Ladyjacks on the court, but one thing is sure, through tragedy, the Jacks, have certainly grown stronger...off

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