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South Salt Lake Journal

Cottonwood drill team finishes out of state contention, but won in other ways

Mar 02, 2021 01:04PM ● By Brian Shaw

Two members of the Chaparrals made Academic All-Region. (Photo courtesy Cottonwood Chaparrals)

By Brian Shaw | [email protected]

Sometimes, when you win, you actually lose. And sometimes, when you lose, you actually win. Actress Rosie Perez said that many years ago in the film “White Men Can’t Jump” after her partner Woody Harrelson lost a pickup basketball game. 

In this case, the Cottonwood Chaparrals drill team may have lost at the Region 6 championships on Jan. 21, but they may have won in other more important ways, suggested head coach Nicky Soulier. 

“We had the funnest, best time at Region! Great memories were made,” Soulier said. “We laughed, we bonded, we performed our routines the best we ever have.” 

In a year when so much has changed the overall dynamic of competition itself, sometimes it’s just as good to look at what the players in this game we call life accomplish as people—and not just as participants in a sporting event. 

To that end, the Chaparrals received the highest marks, according to their head coach. Victory is sweet, and to be sure the Chaparrals have won their share of awards over the decades. But sometimes, there’s just as much to be gained from defeat—maybe more than the winning itself. 

“I was so proud of the character of my girls. They wished the other teams good luck over and over,” Soulier said. “They told them ‘good job’ and ‘congratulations.’ They were a class act. They were champions in the most important ways.” 

They were also champions in the classroom, said Soulier. Hailey Thompson and Ashley Clay both earned Academic All-Region honors, accolades that transfer to lives well beyond any arena. 

Next up for the Chaparrals? Tryouts for the 2021-22 season, March 24 at Cottonwood.