BASKET F, Support: Roberta Stola ‘Great teamwork, we never stopped’
A complete view of the season that has just ended that offered by the coach of Taranto
(By Ilaria Petruzzi) The talk with Roberta Stola, one of the main faces of Taranto women’s basketball and part of the Support team, was extremely sincere and human. These are precisely the right occasions to realize the good work that has been done in recent years to grow the movement, in spite of everything and everyone. Unfortunately, two years of pandemic have closed many businesses and diminished the enthusiasm of hundreds of girls. In short, the conditions of the season that had just ended were not exactly the best. In fact, the last few months have given us many unexpected surprises and satisfactions. The motto, inevitably, was never to give up. “We never stopped, also working outside. We have focused a lot on individual work and the basics. It was a great help to those who joined. When we got back to the gym there was a great desire to resume. I think you should always try to find the positive side in every situation. The pandemic has given us the opportunity to understand how important it was to go to the gym.
Undoubtedly, the approach to sport has changed and perhaps also the value that young people attach to it …“The importance of sharing has been understood. During the year we had problems training, sometimes we meet three or four people in a team of eighteen. We have all been affected by Covid. In any case, we never thought about throwing in the towel, even though we trained all four equally. The company has always put us in the right conditions to move forward because we firmly believed in the work we were doing. We also played in six or seven with most of the starting lineup not available. Even those who were not in the starting lineup realized their value to the group. The concept of team importance has been conveyed so much. Not only do you play with the elements considered technically strongest, it is often the spirit of the group that makes the difference. We participated in the men’s CSEN championship by introducing an all-female team, allowing the girls to compare themselves to their teammates. We wanted them to play as much as possible as there were very few teams registered for the FIP championship. It is also important that the girls who practice this sport are in the minority ”.
Clearly the absences at the gym were not only those of the girls but also those of the staff, how did you deal with this problem? “We helped each other. At the wheel there were some absentees and there was also a bit of widespread fear. It has not been an easy year. Sport teaches that in difficulties you have to be strong. I think this is the biggest lesson that we could pass it on to our children. There was a lot of unity and strength of will. “
The conquest of the regional title has also arrived: did you expect this success? How was he born? There was also teamwork by the staff: by Fabio (Palagiano, ed.), Head of the youth sector, Giovanni Guida and Francesco Camerino, managers of our group and, inevitably, President Ciccio Stola . . It was a whole crescendo. In the middle of the year we went to San Sepolcro to do a women’s tournament and after that experience the girls got a lot involved. Choosing to get into a complete pandemic was not easy. Match after match we realized the strength of this group. We have trained a lot and in all conditions. I can say that the work is worth it. Starting a trip with eighteen girls and ending it with the same number of people was a great satisfaction. In the final I necessarily had to call twelve people, but the other girls who were left out still came to the match to support their companions. We have all won. All the elements were important, we tried to convey this idea anyway. I think this group has all the credentials to keep growing in harmony. ”
In any case, it has been a great season for women’s basketball in Taranto, which may just be the first block of something more solid … “This year the satisfactions have been many and unexpected. It was a year of rebirth and no one knew what to expect. We just worked with the hope of never being interrupted. Today we have about thirty girls born between 2009 and 2011 and they are a heritage to be cared for and motivated. We must try in every way to involve them and make them play as much as possible. The support in its first year has achieved really satisfactory results. The most exciting thing for those who work in the youth sector is to be able to see their girls grow up and get to Serie C. This is what every coach expects every time they start a journey with a new group ”.