By: RJ Kaminski
Have you ever been down a player or two for a tournament or a club game? If so, slim chance your mom volunteered to fill the empty spot, right? Well, at Shootout for Soldiers Atlanta, that is exactly what happened.
Merrilyn David and Sarah Serbinski suited up for their first-ever lacrosse game at Kennesaw Mountain High School. Both mothers played with their daughters on the field, making it an unforgettable 60 minutes.
Merrilyn, with a giant smile across her face, ran out onto the field alongside her 12-year-old daughter.
“After we registered and discovered we were a few players short, Coach Sarah asked for volunteers to play with the girls,” David said. I thought this was a great time to step up and experience what it’s really like to be on a lacrosse field.”
Merrilyn was elated to share her first real lacrosse game action with her 12-year-old daughter, Itali David.
Out hustling on defense in the Georgia heat, Merrilyn experienced first hand the hard work that her daughter and the entire Lady Bears lacrosse team put into each game.
“I have a newfound respect for her and her team mates,” David said. “I learned that it is not as easy as it seems.”
Playing in Saturday’s game did something similar for Sarah Serbinski, coach of the U11 Lady Bears.
“Through that [coaching] experience I’ve really enjoyed the ‘Love The Game’ mentality as a coach and felt like the next step was to actually play the game,” said Serbinski. “Shootout for Soldiers allowed that to happen.”
“And playing alongside my daughters and the athletes I coach was really a unique opportunity and gave me much respect to all of the girls, coaches, refs who are growing the sport!” she added.
Sarah was able to participate in her first lacrosse game as well as go up against her own U11 Lady Bear players and other girls playing from Gwinnett County. It was truly a family affair, as Sarah’s 12-year-old twins Danielle and Kailyn Serbinski took the field with her as well as her 6-year-old, Delaney.
“My favorite memory was how excited the girls were to be out there and just love the game,”Serbinski said. “No one really cared about the score or number of goals.”
“Every one of our youngest players scored! The youngest on the field was my 6-year-old daughter, Delaney. We had many sibling sets on field together,”Serbinski said. “It was awesome!”
The sixty-minute game showcased more than five sets of siblings, two moms (Merrilyn and Sarah), and five different dads out playing on the turf.
Sarah noted the several parents on and around the field who had a history of military service. “We were thankful that the game our kids love could be used to show them our respect and support,”Serbinski said. “It’s also a wonderful experience to talk to the girls about veterans and some of the needs we can help provide for them.”
Their advice for moms and dads thinking about doing the same thing?
“I think every parent should suit up at least once to see experience this awesome sport,” said David.