Two things stick out in my mind about the Miami Vandals playoff game during the football season. The first was that our Miami Vandals could have won the game against the State Champions from Round Valley. Number two, was the performance by Vandals receiver, Jayden Goss. Jayden had play after play against Round Valley, executing the game plan to perfection. The Vandals lost and the effort went unnoticed, by most. And Jayden did what he does best. He quietly went back to work.
Basketball season was coming up fast and as student athlete, Jayden holds himself to a high standard in the classroom. Jayden states, “That is one of my main goals, Doing well in academics. I have to manage my time with sports, getting my homework done every night and setting a good schedule for the weekends. I am a high rank in my class, number one I think, and I plan to keep that up through college.” For Jayden Goss there was no time to sulk over the playoff loss or to dance in the glory of his performance. It was time to focus on basketball. Jayden was a major part of the basketball team as they represented the Miami Vandals in the playoffs. Sadly, it would be another tough loss to a high ranked team.
These playoff appearances and losses are more than they seem. They are helping to build something in Miami. Something that Jayden Goss has helped his fellow student athletes to understand. And that is: hard work and good decisions equal winning.
Jayden doesn’t say a lot. He is not that vocal leader that is preaching from the soap box. Instead, Goss lives it. He is a leader by example. For a small school, in a small town that is used to losing, learning to win is a big deal. Being an example to your peers on how to build that winning culture is a big deal.
Now Jayden Goss and his fellow student athletes are embarking on their third journey of the season, baseball. The expectation is to make it to the playoffs of course. But these kids are tired of losing. The playoffs just aren’t good enough anymore. For the guys like Jayden, who have played all three major sports, the expectation is to win state. These young men have been competing as a team, in one sport or another, for the entire year. It is an understatement to say that they are ready to win and to win now. On the field, in school and at home.