Das zweite Jahr in Folge wurden die Mädchen von UNSERE KLEINEN BRÜDER UND SCHWESTERN Nicaragua Meister in der A-Liga der Fußball-Mädchen-Schulteams.
Herzlichen Glückwunsch, Mädels!
Then in 2003, everything began to change when we were invited to participate in the high school nationals. Most of our girls at that time were 13 and 14 years old, some younger. We played against 16 and 17 year old players in Nicaragua's capital Managua. We surprised everyone, including ourselves, by coming in third place over all. From there it became easier to convince the girls to dedicate more time in practice, because they could see the direct results of their hard work. We made a vow to try to win nationals the following year.
When the 2004 nationals arrived, we were a team on a mission. The girls went to nationals with a dream and it was fulfilled when they won five games in 3 days to become the 2004 high school national champions of Nicaragua. As the girls were celebrating on the field, I remember feeling like I had witnessed a sort of miracle, knowing the difficult lives that many of our players had experienced before joining our family here at NPH, and that now they could say that at least for a day they were the best high school soccer team in their country.
In 2005, we returned to Managua and came in second place, losing in sudden death in the finals. We were the favorites and the team was very disappointed; I was worried about how they would respond. But this year our kids proved to themselves and all their brothers and sisters here in Nicaragua that they are a truly strong and resilient group of players.
For the second time in 3 years, they won the high school national championship here in Nicaragua. With this victory comes the grand honor or representing Nicaragua in the Central American games in Panama, this September. We have high hopes to be the first team representing Nicaragua in girls' soccer to return with a medal. I am so proud of our little sisters on this team. Against so many difficult obstacles, they have learned teamwork; they learned that hard work leads to success; and most importantly, that with faith and hope dreams can become reality.