Tampa, Fl. – Jan. 24, 2019 – Florida Orthopaedic Institute (FOI) is proud to announce Esteban Gonzalez and Aniah Rasool from Lennard High School as the ‘Athletes of the Week’ for the week ending January 25, 2019.
Gonzalez was nominated by Cross Country coach Kristen Still, who admired the commitment and perseverance that the young student-athlete displayed throughout his time at Lennard.
“Esteban was the cross country team captain this season,” Stillwell said. “We chose him because he is a natural leader that works hard to make sure everyone feels included. Last season he mentored a freshman who ended up qualifying for States. Esteban was there to cheer him on the entire time. After our season ended, he invited the team out for a group run over the Thanksgiving holiday. He knew the team would be stronger next year with consistent practice.”
Taking a deeper look into the meaning of being a leader, Gonzalez found that it is not all about personal success.
“This year, I decided to start training myself to be in the mindset of a leadership role,” Gonzalez said. “A good leader knows that they have made an impact when everyone is successful. I’m proud to say that, for the first time in eight years, Lennard High School’s boys’ team qualified for the Regional Level Competition.”
Rasool was recognized by Girls’ Soccer head coach Vanessa Escobar, who appreciated the junior’s tenacity and resilience.
“Aniah’s aggressive play and pure determination helped her team to a 4-0 win over Brandon, scoring all four goals,” said Smith. “She took eight shots on goal and connected with four, also stealing the ball twice. It seemed Aniah would not settle for a good game. She wanted to help her team win, and that is what she did.”
After discovering the effort involved in obtaining goals, Rasool set herself on a path of achievement.
“I want to reach my goals of being successful and accomplished in life,” Rasool said. “Early, I realized that if I don’t work hard enough, I won’t be able to do what I really want. Having a good head on my shoulder and the right mindset has put me where I am today. I will continue to follow the path of life and gain the experience to help me reach that goal.”
In the midst of certain trials and frustrations, Gonzalez and Rasool remind others to remain grounded and to not let obstacles block the path towards a goal.
“Kindness goes a long way,” Gonzalez said. “Using kindness to build trust and relationships is far more effective than trying to be controlling.”
“Everything happens for a reason,” Rasool continued. “If you’re going through a rough patch, there are probably smiles and rainbows on the other side of the door.”
Florida Orthopaedic Institute’s Athlete of the Week campaign is designed to focus on student-athletes, recognizing them for their hard work and dedication both on and off the field. The Athlete of the Week award can be earned by displaying one of the following characteristics:
Team Player: Athletes who are nominated for excellence in team play are chosen by a coach who feels the athlete does his or her best to put direction into action, makes a significant contribution to the team and continuously works to improve his or her skills, attitude and training.
Leadership: Athletes who earn the award in recognition of excellent leadership must exemplify strong relationship building skills, show excellent initiative and serve as role models for his or her peers.
To view last week’s award winners, please follow this link.
Florida Orthopaedic Institute
Founded in 1989, Florida Orthopaedic Institute is Florida’s largest orthopedic group and provides expertise and treatment of orthopedic-related injuries and conditions, including adult reconstruction and arthritis, chiropractic services, foot and ankle, general orthopedics, hand and wrist, interventional spine, musculoskeletal oncology, orthopedic trauma, physical medicine and rehabilitation, physical and occupational therapy, sports medicine, shoulder and elbow, spine and chiropractic services, among others. The organization treats patients throughout its surgery centers in North Tampa and Citrus Park, two orthopaedic urgent care centers in South Tampa and Brandon, and 10 office locations in Bloomingdale, Brandon, Brooksville, Citrus Park, North Tampa, Northdale, Palm Harbor, South Tampa, Sun City Center and Wesley Chapel. For more information, please visit: FloridaOrtho.com and ‘like’ us on Facebook: facebook.com/Florida.Orthopaedic.Institute.