The boys and girls of the Vernon-Verona-Sherrill soccer teams are receiving recognition from an unlikely place: an opposing team's coach. When you hear the story, you'll understand why.

The soccer teams from VVS and Central Valley Academy met in competition recently. This isn't about who won or lost that day. Instead, it's about character and sportsmanship and a little girl named Anna who is battling cancer.

Anna is a 6th grader at Central Valley. She's been valiantly fighting bone cancer. In an effort to raise money to support Anna and her family, the Central Valley district planned to host a "Go Gold for Anna" night. That's where this story begins, as told by Jonna Costin, CVA's soccer coach in a letter to the VVS soccer coaches.

When the VVS teams arrived at CVA, Jonna writes, "they handed me money. Money they had collected themselves to donate to a little girl that they had never met before." There's more. The VVS girls team keeper, Morgan Brewer, ran over to give Anna a fist pound and say "You got this." Later, the game was interrupted by thunder, and all the kids went to the gym to seek shelter.

"What happened next was awesome. Anna and her friends came into the gym with our players to escape the nasty weather." Someone asked if music could be played over the speakers in the gym, so they did. Jonna writes, "the next thing I know, we had a full on dance off at half court. Four teams, plus a little girl battling something most adults couldn't handle, all laughing and dancing together. It was one of my most favorite nights I've ever experienced as a coach."

Anna's mom shared some of the photos from that night on her Facebook page.

As Janna says,  “This is why I love athletics. It’s not just about winning and losing...there are so many life lessons that take place in a season.”

Congratulations to the VVS boys and girls soccer teams, as well as their families.

If you'd like to contribute to Anna's fight against Ewing's Sarcoma, her family has organized a Go Fund Me.

Credit: GO Fund Me
Credit: GO Fund Me

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