Basketball - Central Asia

  • Saying Goodbye

    Section: Basketball

    Basketball - Central Asia

    Today concluded our trip to beautiful Central Asia. We spent our last full day up in the mountains to debrief and reflect over the last week. I decided to go pretty far up the mountain, which about killed me, because of the altitude. However, it was an amazing view over the city. We had about an hour to reflect and about 45 minutes in a rain storm moved in and three of us got caught up on the mountain and got soaked coming back down. I guess that’s the price you pay for a great view.

    That night we went to a traditional Uzbek restaurant where we had some national dishes. We had Plove, which is just rice with vegetables and meat. I think that was our favorite dish all week! We also had Shashlik, which is a huge Shish-kabob with either lamb, duck, or chicken. It was a ton of food and we were all stuffed by the end. It was cool to learn about an Uzbek traditional meal and the way they eat it! I got to eat my Plove with me fingers which made me feel like a kid again.

    When we got back from dinner, we had to pack really quickly, and then the girls we had been working with at camp came to our hostel to spend the last few hours with us. They made us signs with lots of pictures from the week and even wrote down the Russian words we learned so that we wouldn’t forget them. They also came to the airport at 2am to say goodbye. I know for me it was incredibly hard to say goodbye to them. They impacted my life so much this week and I’m going to miss them terribly. They have the sweetest hearts and I loved spending time with them and getting to know them. So many memories were made on this trip and I know we not only impacted their lives but they impacted ours and left their mark on our hearts that will remain forever. 

    We also had to say goodbye as teammates today. I had a blast getting to know each one of these girls and coaches, I couldn’t have asked for better people to share this life changing experience with. This trip exceeded beyond my expectations and I’m so thankful I got to share it with the people that I did. Thank you to everyone who supported us, it wouldn’t have happened without you!


    Saying our last goodbyes.

  • Coming home with a 'W'

    Section: Basketball

    Basketball - Central Asia

    After a long three days of games, the tournament has come to an end with Drive Academy taking home the gold! It has been so much fun getting to watch these girls play their hearts out and to see how much they have grown in the short two weeks we have been together. We have become a family and even though we are exhausted from our crazy schedule, we are going to treasure these last few days we have together! I am grateful for getting to experience this tour with each of these girls. I am not only excited to see what happens in their lives back in America, but also the girls who impacted us here in Central Asia. The Drive School of Basketball is changing lives and I can’t wait to see what happens next!


    Medal presentation.

    Getting dressed up for our victory party!

  • Family

    Section: Basketball

    Basketball - Central Asia

    Today was a great a day.  We got to spend some quality time with the girls from camp. 

    They prepared us a traditional Central Asia meal, including horse meat which they told us was beef, and after our games we all went and ate together at a local place. It was truly touching to see the girls do something special for us, and I’m really glad that we were able to just talk with them off the court.

    Probably my favorite part of dinner was listening to everyone’s toasts they gave.  I loved hearing how we all felt and what we all took away from the trip.  The girls have such big hearts and are so appreciative of us coming. But what they don’t realize is they are making an impact on us as well.  I’ve grown and learned so much from these girls and they will always have a special place in my heart. 

    After dinner, we rode the metro to the park and saw some new things in the city.  We eventually found our way to the Karaoke machine and had some fun while drawing a pretty big crowd.  After a long, long day we finally said our goodbyes to the girls and headed to bed knowing tomorrow is the last day we will get to spend with them.  I’m so thankful for getting to spend such a great day with them.



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