High school sports provide example of unity
High school sports provides an opportunity to unify people.
Throughout the Shenandoah Valley each school year, student athletes of varying races and backgrounds compete together and against one another in high school athletics. These practices and games provide an opportunity for people to come together in order to achieve a common goal.
"Just going through that grind, that struggle together, just brings people closer," said Staunton High School boys basketball coach Terrell Mickens. "We bleed, we cry, we sweat together. So I just think that naturally builds that bond...It doesn't matter...your skin, your color, your ethnicity, your religion. We just come together to accomplish the same goal."
Local high school coaches believe the experiences of playing a sport could be an example for people working together during a time when there are protests throughout the country in response to the recent death of George Floyd in police custody.
"We bring people from different backgrounds together and we have to achieve a common goal," said East Rockingham football head coach Donnie Coleman. "I think that's what we are trying to do as a society and we kind of do it on a smaller scale but you see a lot of our kids literally become brothers."