Staff Join Unified Sports Team for First Game of Year

By Norah Kelley, ’24

Staff Writer

After a year and a half without games due to the pandemic, the HHS Unified Sports Team resumed play on October 21. In the fall, the team plays soccer, and for this first match, school staff was invited to take part. Teachers and students played hard and showed great teamwork and sportsmanship. Family and friends came to support the Unified Team and watch the game. Even some dogs came to watch! 

“I am so proud of the Unified Soccer team. They played with so much heart and our faculty players did a fantastic job!” said Mrs. Gately, HHS Spanish teacher and the program coordinator. “It was a great day for everyone.”  Mrs. Gately thanked Ms. Nixon, Mr. Decie, Ms. Doyle, Mrs. McHugh, Mrs. Bostwick, and Mrs. Cotter “for playing with so much gusto!”

Students are eager for another game soon, hopefully against another Unified Sports Team. Other local districts including Abington and Marshfield have Unified Teams as well, and HHS has played against them in the past. For now, practice continues every week. Later in the year, the team will switch to volleyball or basketball in the winter and kickball in the spring. 

Unified Sports is part of a national program that is a branch of the Special Olympics. Its goal is to bring together athletes with and without intellectual disabilities to compete on the same team. I look forward to our Unified Sports practices every week. The team is so supportive, and everyone loves to be there. If you are interested in joining, please reach out to Mrs. Gately or me for more information! 

11 thoughts on “Staff Join Unified Sports Team for First Game of Year”

  1. This article displays a great deal about not only the Unified sports program, but about the compassion that the staff and students hold for this team. Before I read this article, I didn’t know much about the Unified team other than hearing about it on the announcements, and the final 2 paragraph of the article present a lot of great information. I love the effort that Mrs. Gately and the other staff put in to make sure this event is great for the kids and that information about the Unified team is given. I look forward to seeing and reading more about the Unified sports program, as it is a great part of our loving community.

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  2. This is a wonderfully written article! I watched this Unified Game alongside my own soccer team. It was really great to see the participants enjoying themselves after such a long time without the games. I look forward to hearing about their next game.

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    1. This is a really good article! I liked how you included quotes from teachers who participated. I like how you included when their next games are and a little background about the team. This article was very detailed and good.

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  3. Amazing article Norah! I really enjoyed how you captured the spirit of the game and the organization, as well as including quotes from participants and organizers. It was very informative, and the game is such an amazing thing to do!

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  4. This article was really enlightening! In the spring my softball team and I played a game of kickball with the team. It was a lot of fun and I hope to make it to a few events this upcoming winter season!

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  5. I really enjoyed reading this article because I did not know much about this program and it seems like a great opportunity to have at school. I also learned that there are other districts such as Abington and Marshfield that have unified sports teams, that the Hanover team plays. This article was very heartwarming to hear because it is so nice that students with intellectual disabilities can participate in an athletic program like this.

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  6. I love this article as it was very well written and explained what the unified sports team was in great detail. I also enjoyed how the article included a quote from Mrs. Gately, expressing her love for the team. The pictures included were also a very nice addition to this article. Overall, this was a great article to read.

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  7. This was a really interesting and well written article. It really captured how amazing this Unified Sports Team is and how it can really be beneficial to all of those who take part. The community has done a great job supporting this team and ensuring that everyone has an amazing experience.

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  8. I learned many new things about Unified Sports in this article. Before I read this I didn’t know that it was something that other town had, now I know that it is even part of the national program in the Special Olympics! I think that it is super cool that teachers and students get to play against each other. I also liked how you included quotes from the teachers who played, it gave a good perspective on what the program is like and what it’s about.

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