Gananda’s girls basketball team features a group of seniors who have been playing together for a long time.
“We started play Walworth rec together when we were in 3rd grade,” said Emma Drake.
As you can imagine they’ve had their fair share of disagreements over the years.
“They’re like a family and sisters fight, right?” laughed head coach Karin Meuwissen.
“Yeah we bicker,” smiled Peyton Daeffler. “We still bicker all the time but we’ve been playing with each other for so long that we know exactly what to do to get over it.”
They say getting on each other’s nerves every once in a while is actually good for team chemistry.
“A big part of what makes us successful is we are good at holding each other accountable for certain things and we know each others strengths and weaknesses,” said Cassie Prinsen.
Along with their team chemistry Gananda can attribute their success to a Gatorade bottle. But it’s not about the sports drink on the inside, instead it’s about the message written on the outside.
“Before every game our coach will get us mini Gatorade’s,” says Drake
“And there is a quote tapped around it and then an explanation,” added Daeffler.
“It’s things we really need to hear that are specific for that game,” said Prinsen.
“Say it’s a game we really need to box out and be more physical than we like to be I try and make the quote revolve around physicality and toughness.”
It started it out nearly five years ago when Meuwissen took over as head coach. She saw it as a way to break the ice with the team.
“After I did it once and they were so appreciative, they were like we love these Gatorades bottles and they save the quotes,” said Meuwissen.
“‘They’re all in my bag or my locker or even at home, laughed Prinsen. “I find them all over the place.”
“Everyone sees us grabbing Gatorades with paper tapped to it and they’re like, ‘what are they doing’ and I’m like we do it. It’s good,” smiled Daeffler.
Gananda didn’t take home a sectional title this season but those seniors will always have those quotes and will never look at a Gatorade bottle the same way again.