This year, the administration at Sparkman Middle School asked me to provide picture services for their Fall sports. Needless to say I was very excited. Since starting at Sparkman High School, I have worked on my skills and hoped to share them with the entire Sparkman High School family of schools.
This past week, my wife (Mrs. Shuttleman, aka Ms. Ericka, aka Mrs. Lowe) and I were able to take pictures at the Sparkman vs. Liberty Middle School game. The coach and I had spoken a few days before the game and he had nothing but good things to say about the team. He admitted the team had struggles, but he firmly believes his kids just need to believe in themselves and they can do well.
Both teams struggled. We could see they had talent, but the pieces just were not coming together that night. That paled in comparison to what we saw on the sideline through out BOTH games. Ms. Ericka turned to me numerous times to mention how impressed she was with what she saw and heard on the sidelines. The boys were making mistakes and the coaches were not clearly happy. We heard some strict and pointed coaching, but what we also saw was and heard was endless encouragement, praise, support, and even commiseration. The coaches balanced their frustration by being upbeat with the boys. Not once were their comments demeaning or insulting.
The encouragement did not end with the coaches. As the 7th grade team was walking off the field, defeated, the 8th players walked out to meet their younger teammates, offering hand shakes, pats on the back, and numerous encouraging words. Truly an impressive moment. Check out these photos of what we saw...
Thank you coaches, teachers, staff, administration at Sparkman Middle School. Instead of remembering what was on the scoreboard that night, we walked away from the game encouraged, impressed, and grateful for an exception show of coaching and mentoring. #1Sparkman #goCougars #GoSparkamn @MadCoSchools
More photos of the games can be found at the follow link including pictures of the cheerleaders and band: