tribal tribune | mark their place

Sophomore Ansley Douty loves playing soccer and it shows when she plays. She finds the perfect balance between concentration and pleasure.
(Scarlette Lewis)

On April 24, 1996, the WNBA, or Women’s National Basketball Association, was founded and approved by the NBA Board of Governors. This league has proven to be a step in the right direction for female athletes around the world.

The debate over the gender pay gap in sport has heated up in recent years, in addition to the lack of attention given to women’s sports, not only at the professional level but also at the preparatory level.

In some scenarios, many people think women’s sports are overlooked, even though they share some of the same competitive attributes as men’s sports. There are different reasons why people believe this such as the lack of viewers they get.

Wando Varsity sophomore football player Ansley Douty has been playing football since she was five years old and hopes to lead her team to another state championship this year.

As a society, we have improved tremendously over time. However, I think small changes, like those at Wando High School to put more emphasis on women’s sports, could take us a big step in the right direction,” Douty said.

She believes the world has made progress in recent years in recognizing the achievements of women in sport. However, she also thinks Wando can make changes in the way they promote women’s sports teams during their seasons.

As a society, we have improved tremendously over time. However, I think small changes, like Wando High’s to put more emphasis on women’s sports, could take us a big step in the right direction.

—Ansley Douty

“I think some things Wando can do that would help change some of those differences or just improve Wando athletes as a whole announce all sporting events happening that day during morning announcements,” said Douty. “Another way to get more students into every game supporting the school is to make admission free for Wando students or provide a certain number of free tickets to Wando students at each game.”

Douty felt that if Wando raised a little more awareness about women’s sports teams, it would not only help raise awareness for the school, but it would help the school sell more tickets and earn more money from sports games.

Shannon Champ, the head coach of Wando Varsity Soccer, has been coaching soccer at Wando since 2006 and coaching high school soccer since 1996.

When it comes to the differences between men’s and women’s sports in Wando, Champ thinks there aren’t many between the teams.

“[Wando] offers tons of opportunities for athletics here at Wando both on the women’s side and on the men’s side, I would say the facilities are comparable for both programs…I don’t see much of a difference in terms of our offerings and the athletics for both men’s and women’s sports,” Champ said.

Overall, Champ thinks Wando is doing a good job of providing equal opportunities for men’s and women’s teams, whether it’s training facilities, game scheduling or school outreach for each sport.

Champ thinks Wando should get all of his sports teams together and explain to others why their sport is unique and why Wando students should consider playing it, in hopes that it might help recruit athletes to play sports, bond men’s and women’s teams. , and publicize the matches of each team.

Shannon Champ, the head coach of the Varisty women’s soccer team, guides her players to greatness with her feedback.
(Scarlette Lewis)

“My ideas would be along the lines of having an athletics day, where not only do we honor the athletes, but we have some kind of clinic or opportunity like a carousel that would give students the opportunity to enter the gym or go out to the stadium and visit each sport represented and get to know the people of these programs and that would allow students who are interested in our sports here to see precisely what the opportunities are at Wando,” Champ said.

Globally, women’s sport has come a long way in recent years. Whether through recognition or increased viewership, teams earn respect around the world.

However, there is still a long way to go. Fighting for equal pay or adding different women’s sports to expand college options are some of the next battles to be fought.

“I think it has improved on every level, starting professionally at the Olympics, we added the WNBA, we added women’s professional football. I think we still have some wiggle room, but I’d like to see the trend continue where it’s more balanced in terms of recognition of men’s and women’s sports,” Champ said.

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