Each with the Heart of a Champion
By Scott Miller
Congratulations is in order. The Niceville High School Men’s Soccer Team is now also known as Florida State Champions! That’s something which is earned only through hard work and dedication, through teamwork and homework. Not only did they finish their 2020 season, undefeated and ranked number one in the state of Florida, the Eagles also finished their season ranked as the No. 2 team in the nation according to MaxPreps!
On February 29th, for the first time in school history, the Niceville High School men’s soccer team had positioned themselves to play in the Class 6A State Championship game. So, they traveled to Deland, Florida, led by Head Coach Wes Nelson, and in dramatic fashion, in DOUBLE overtime, defeated their opponent, South Broward High School, 7-3, in a game for the ages.
How does this happen? With so many other high schools fielding great soccer teams both here in Florida and all across the county, how did the young men from Niceville High School rise above to finish their season ranked 2nd in the nation and earn the honor and the title of State Champion? Discipline, commitment, love of the school, incredibly strong support from family, friends, teachers and fans and something deep down inside of each and every team member…The Heart of a Champion!
These players deserve to be celebrated not just for winning soccer games, but also for everything else that goes into winning those soccer games…every single game they played this season. The Heart of a Champion is an extraordinary quality that few people truly possess and, in my opinion, is what separates these players from the rest. I’m not saying that other teams don’t have team members who work hard and give it their all. They do. Each and every team out there does. What I’m saying is when you look at the Niceville High School soccer team, ALL of these team members have demonstrated that this rare quality lives inside of them. And that’s what truly separates one team from another.
This is true not just in soccer or sports in general—this is true in life. So, let’s all celebrate with these young men and learn a little something from them, too. To be successful at whatever we choose to do in life, certain core values should be present. Values such as loyalty, determination, perseverance, trust and love for each other are essential. Thank you to all the team members of the 2020 Niceville High School men’s soccer team and congratulations for an amazing season and a job well done!
Bay Life’s “Hometown Heroes” are sponsored by Mary Kay Phillips and Paige Peterson of Better Homes & Gardens Real Estate and the Homes for Heroes program. To find out if you qualify for Homes for Heroes cash back, contact Paige at 850.259.0643 / Paige@BHGEmeraldCoast.com or Mary Kay at 850.376.7261 / MaryKay@BHGEmeraldCoast.com.