Of 135 Secondary Students (Grades 6-12), 115 tried out for our SAISA sports teams this year. This is approximately 85% participation in our athletics program. We also sent a large group of Musicians and Artists to Jordan and Chennai respectively, attended a MUN conference in Holland, put on two secondary plays, and hosted a MathCounts convention. Altogether, 85% of our student population represented our school in one of these events, while almost 99% of our student population participated in at least one after-school activity this year.
The year began with hosting NISSA boys’ and girls’ volleyball. Our boys won the tournament and our girls finished runners-up to a club team.
We hosted the 2nd Annual LS Swimming Championships, which we won convincingly with many outstanding performances, winning over 90 medals and many of the gold variety.
We successfully defended the Little Angels Swimming Championships.
We were SAISA Girls’ Volleyball champions! For our girls’ team, this is the 4th year in succession that we have either won or been in the final.
Our Boys’ Volleyball were also SAISA champions! This is a record 8 SAISA titles for Boys’ Volleyball.
We hosted SAISA Swimming for the first time in history; we won SAISA Swimming for the first time in history. Our teams finished 2nd in the 10-12 girls, 10-12 boys, 13-14 boys and 15-19 boys and 1st in the 13-14 girls and 15-19 girls. We also finished 2nd in girls overall and 1st in boys overall.
An astonishing 62 School Swimming Records broken this year, including 3 SAISA records.
Our SAISA Girls’ Basketball team had a fantastic 3rd place finish in Mumbai and made it to the finals of the NISSA Championships we hosted.
We were one of three SAISA schools to participate in the Tennis invitational in Mumbai.
We attended an MUN conference in Holland and hosted a small MUN conference
We hosted the MathCounts convention with a number of schools participating in the region and had a gold medalist in the individual round.
Our Boys’ football team showed improvement throughout the season, making the finals of the NISSA Championships and the semi-finals of the SAISA Championships in Chennai.
We participated in SAISA Art for the first time in two years.
Our Badminton team improved on last year’s showing and continues to grow, finishing 6th out of 10 teams.
Our SAISA Girls’ Football team won the NISSA league and championships hosted at Lincoln, and then traveled to Mumbai, where they reached the finals of the SAISA Girls’ Football tournament.
SAISA Track and Field had some wonderful individual performances despite traveling with a young and inexperienced team.
We hosted the SAISA Boys’ Basketball Tournament again this year and our team made it all the way to the final on the back of winning the NISSA basketball championships.
Two successful secondary play productions were performed.
At the end of each year, I find myself both filled with pride and yet shaking my head in disbelief at our accomplishments. This small international school in the Kathmandu Valley continues to go to toe to toe with the best that our SAISA league, complete with schools 3 to 4 times our size, has to offer. How do we do it? Year after year, how do we find the Snow Leopard spirit to dig deep, and be examples to the rest of our sister schools about what it looks like to give your all, and win or lose with sportsmanship and dignity.
First of all, we have a program, a philosophy, founded in tradition, yes, but even more importantly in values like teamwork, humility, respect, balance, friendship, responsibility, and perseverance. We know that to achieve excellence we have to work, we have to try, we have to fail, we have to pick ourselves back up and try again even harder, and perhaps fail again, because that is what it takes to realize our potential. And we have support for this program – from everyone in this school – our drivers, custodians, teachers, teaching assistants, administrators and coaches.
Yes, coaches. We have teachers, coaches who care a great deal. They turn up to practice each day with the commitment to develop our athletes’ skills, but more importantly their character. They are skilled in and passionate about what they do and know what it takes to build successful teams. By success I do not just mean winning, but learning, growing, and improving day-by-day mentally, tactically and technically. Without the commitment of our coaches, this program would not exist.
The final reason why we can be proud to be Lincoln Snow Leopards is because all of you are Lincoln Snow Leopards. You, our student-athletes, are wonderful ambassadors for our school and make us proud because of your desire to learn and improve as athletes and as people. You feel a sense of ownership of the program; a commitment to not only carry on our tradition and model our values, but also to build on, innovate and develop what has come before. You recognize that each individual has values and positive contributions to make and you work to help everyone feel respected and cared for. Everyone can try out for a team, everyone can work to become a Lincoln School Snow Leopard at this school.
Student-athletes, it is you that we honor tonight. Your efforts, your skills, your growth, and your leadership deserve to be recognized. However, not all of you will walk away with a physical award tonight. What I want to tell you athletes is that it is not a failure to miss out on an individual award. Everyone here is part of a team and all of you have had a vital role to play in forming that team. So be proud of yourselves and the efforts you’ve made, and be proud of your teammates and the special qualities they brought to your team. We might not have the pool of students that the other big SAISA schools have, or even the locals in Kathmandu, but we succeed because we are one, we are one big TEAM and as the acronym on our gym wall reads, together everyone really does achieve more. Thank you. – Luke Davis