My friends and family will be the first to tell you that I am not a sporty person. From watching sports to participating in them, I am usually the first to say no. However, one of the few things I have always appreciated about sports is the community that you can find within, and as a freshman at Hope, I knew that I wanted to find an enriching community.

So, in January of 2020, I swallowed my pride when asked if I wanted to participate in an intramural volleyball team, and for the first time, I willingly said yes to playing. I wasn’t sure of anything except for 2 things: that I was excited to play with peers that would hopefully turn into friends, and that I was nervous to play with my poor set of athletic skills. 

2 Legit 2 Hit

My team, 2 Legit 2 Hit, was an assorted group of people with little to no background in volleyball, which was fortunate for me because we immediately had something in common. Some of my teammates were people my friend and I actively recruited in our dorm, and others were mutual friends of those we recruited. Ultimately, 2 Legit 2 Hit was a group of people who found ways to hang out outside of the classroom, and we took advantage of the opportunity. 

A group of Hope students wearing athletic clothing striking poses before their last volleyball game at the Dow gym.
2 Legit 2 Hit at our Last Game

Our practices were exhausting and hilarious, and we quickly realized that our goal was not to play well, but to get the ball over the net. We laughed to the point of tears and played to the point of exhaustion. We talked strategy we didn’t fully understand and hyped each other up until our throats were sore. 

This hype carried into our matches against teams who definitely were more dedicated than us. But nothing mattered except trying our best and laughing it off when our best wasn’t enough. Other teams could always hear us as we screamed on the court, making jokes and bringing an unnecessary amount of energy to the Dow. If we won, it was a thrilling surprise. If we lost, it was nothing more than an opportunity to smile and bond over our effort.

Unbreakable Bond

And this bond carried outside of the Dow.  I was able to hang out with people I would have never crossed paths with. Even if we weren’t best friends, I was able to find new familiar faces on campus. Today, some of my teammates are my closest friends, and my time playing intramural volleyball Freshman year led to some of my favorite memories at Hope.

99% of the time when I’m asked to watch or participate in sports, you will find me saying no. However, I am grateful for the 1%, and for the community I found through saying yes. 

Published by Hannah Santiago

Class of 2023 Hometown: Chicago, Illinois Major: Political Science

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