Brooks & Crowley - April 2020

Review Brooks & Crowley

April 2020

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AN EMPOWERING EXPERIENCE Taking My Daughters to the SheBelieves Cup

of the year. As a soccer coach, I was like the new teacher who’s barely a chapter ahead of the students until I was lucky enough to connect with Dave Wainwright. He taught me all I know about soccer and made me into a fan. Now I see kids I coached when they were 7 years old driving cars around the neighborhood, and I just shake my head. Boy, does time fly. Over the years as both a coach and father, it’s been a joy to watch my girls grow to become accomplished athletes and empowered women in their own right. Watching the USWNT live was an electrifying experience the three of us won’t soon forget. At a time where we’ll all be cooped up inside for the foreseeable future, having a bright source of inspiration is more important than ever.

the World Cup in 2015. Their victory drew some rather sexist criticism by those who thought the players were “showboating” and “over- celebrating” their newfound world champion status. Thus, the tournament became a way to show girls it’s okay to be unapologetically proud of their accomplishments. Naturally, as a parent, I want to inspire my kids and give them positive role models, making this an ideal event. My girls got to see their favorite star players; though sadly, they couldn’t sign autographs due to coronavirus concerns. But they received placards for the event — Katie now has hers hung up in her room. All in all, it was an empowering event for my daughters. Plus, with some of the best women’s soccer teams in the world playing at this tournament, I have to admit that I had a great time myself! I was never really a soccer fan growing up, although I played a little pickup soccer along with whatever other sport was in season. Diane and I signed our girls up for soccer when they were 3 or 4 years old because it’s practically the only sport kids that age can play. Katie was shy and didn’t want to go on the field for the first game. Someone told me a trick where parents would go on the field the first week or two to make their child comfortable. I tried this the first week, and it worked. Now, she’s a two-time high school captain and her league’s most valuable player. Lily, who’s two years younger, also plays varsity soccer. After that first week at soccer, I found out I had been volunteered to be an assistant coach. This somehow blossomed into a 10-year basketball and soccer coaching gig, working 40 weeks out

I hope this newsletter finds you and your family in good health. At the time of writing, the spread of the coronavirus has shut down much of the country, making the trip I took with my daughters last month all the more special. At the time we were getting out to watch some soccer games, we didn’t know it would be the last time we’d be able to go out in public. Of course, getting to see the U.S. women’s national team (USWNT) play was always going to be a special experience for our girls, especially our senior, Katie. She’s been following the movements of the national team for some time now, and whenever they play a game remotely close to Boston, she asks if we can make the trip. So when the SheBelieves Cup brought the world champions to Red Bull Arena in New Jersey, I knew we had to make the drive. For those who are unaware, the SheBelieves Cup is an invitational soccer tournament put on to inspire young women. U.S. Soccer’s website says the USWNT inspired the tournament during

Best wishes to you and yours,

–Neil Crowley

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