Robert E. Lee Hall towers over the YMCA Blue Ridge Assembly campground on Black Mountain, North Carolina. Eight majestic white columns buoy the entrance that is fronted by eight long, wide steps ascending to the wooden platform porch where dozens of green wooden rocking chairs are spread out across the deck.
When Mike Sanfratello steps off the plane he starts with a prayer. “Lord, help me to get out of the way …” he whispers as his feet move quickly through the airport terminal in Utah. “Let me find you here and let me join you in it.”
The late John Wooden believed success was contingent on timing; every play required precision. Wooden drilled his players in practice, repeating schemes step-by-step until everyone was in lockstep, every movement a flawless execution.
WNBA guard Monica Wright knows about timing, too.
One of the first things Kylie Miraldi learned as a student at San Jose State University was the meaning of dehydration. Miraldi, the nutrition major, is studying dietetics. Miraldi, the athlete, experienced the physical symptoms. But it was Miraldi, the Christian, who’d face the spiritual showdown against the condition.
Miraldi had decided to apply at the college following a campus visit in 2008. She was certain San Jose State was the college for her. She wanted to play Division I volleyball. She wanted to stay in California, and the fact that Sarah McAtee, who Miraldi has played volleyball with since she was eight years old, was also bound for San Jose State and would be her teammate, was confirmation – or so she thought.