Westfield, June 2nd, 2019: Testimony from Margaret Powe Ortell, a participant in the adult womens' finals in the Lauren Holiday Cup.
"I had a pretty cool soccer day today! I have fallen in love with this game!
I think as a kid I played 1 season of recreational soccer. I didn't play again until I was 28 years old. I lied about my age so I could play in an Over 30 indoor soccer league out in the Plainfield area. They needed players and I thought the idea of playing soccer as an adult sounded so cool! So I was all about bending those rules to get my start in this game!
Today I played my first State Cup game. I have watched Tika play in many of these tournaments. She was probably about 12 when she played her first one. But for me, at the age of 50, I played my 1st State Cup game. That alone made it a great day! My #1 fan came with the entire Hernandez family to cheer me on!
I still think it is so cool that I get to play this game as an adult! I have had some amazing mentors in this game! Thankful for those that saw something in me and were willing to reach out to me to teach me. I am so thankful for the pioneer players in our city that led the way. Thankful for the players fought through injuries and showed me, I don't have to let it stop me. I am thankful for those players that still to this day, have no stop in them, regardless of any physical aches or pains they experience. I am thankful for all the coaches that have mentored me as a coach, a parent, a player and a fan of the game. But most of all, I think I am thankful for all of the opportunities made available because of this game. Things like the college opportunities for Martika, traveling, meeting people you would otherwise never have met, to be a mentor for someone else and not even realize the impact you have made into thier life until you get to play in a soccer game with them 20 years later.
I am looking forward to my next soccer tournament in October.I am also looking forward to another 20 years of soccer.
Thankful for all of those that share the love of this game! Inspired and mentored by so many, but here are some that I want to thank personally:
Martika Hernandez, Jeanette 'Jett' Kovacs, Darrell Fathauer, Jackie Berg Waggoner, Vina Ananias, Sharon Mermelstein, Kerri Reifle, Laura Jean Paterson, Terry Bruce, Julie Merder Bannon, Kim Bunn, Joni Kirch, Brenda Nix Foglio, Stephanie Stallings Walker, Michele McCorkle, Jody Toth, Amy Tipsword Carson, Kate Richmond, Brett McIntosh, Todd Hissong, John Carter, John Griffin, Andy Hubbard, Shelly Ethier, Lisa Hanger"