Yali Middle School only invests in sports where it can do well, and soccer is one of these sports (women's basketball is another).
Today, I attended the Hunan provincial championship came (basically a state championship game), where Yali beat its main rival in overtime penalty kicks. After two scoreless halves, it came down to the last penalty kick. The Yali goalie somehow conjured up A-Purd's spirit, dove to the right, and pushed the soccer ball away from the net! Super exciting!! As a result of this win, the team will represent Hunan Province in nationals later this year.
Also, after today's game, the head coach (whose English name, no lie, is Walt Disney) invited the Yale-China teachers and me to a celebration dinner. Lots of food, lots of 白酒, lots of laughter, lots of toasting. Fun times all around.
Looking forward to cheering on Yali athletics (aka, soccer and women's basketball).