I remain as unbiased as possible when covering high school sports events, even when its a local team facing a non-local.
But at the end of a playoff run, it’s hard not to offer some condolences when the local team loses.
“You had a great run,” I said to Upland Christian girls volleyball coach Doug Porterfield Wednesday after the Eagles lost in the CIF-SS semifinals to Los Angeles Bishop Conaty-Loretto.
“There’s always next year,” was the cliche’ I said to Danielle Maxwell, knowing that she’s a junior and there’s only one senior on the whole team.
Yet, there may not be a next year. As the school transitions from Upland Christian to Western Christian, many of the students don’t know if they’ll be at the new school. Most, if not all, of their teachers, will likely be gone. The tradition they created will be wiped out.
There was certainly a motivation to win for Porterfield, who was fired last week before he was reinstated a day later. But there’s also a motivation to win for yourself, your teammates and your school. All members of the Upland Christian family will remember this run to the semifinals, no matter where they are next year.