Vanderbilt vs. Tennessee - Women in Sports Pregame Mixer
By Victoria Gutridge
The Women in Sports Committee was recently started by the Nashville Sports Council to engage members in a new and unique way. The focus of this committee is to highlight an aspect of the sports world that is often overlooked: women’s sports.
The Sports Council hosted a mixer that on Thursday, February 11th, 2016 at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse prior to the Vanderbilt vs. Tennessee Women’s Basketball game, and with approximately fifty people in attendance. The two guest speakers for the evening were Latina Davis, a former Lady Vol at the University of Tennessee and Jessica Mooney, a former Vanderbilt Commodore star.
The event was incredibly successful and attracted a wide variety of members and non-members. Men and women of all ages came out to show support for the Women in Sports Committee and to meet other people also interested in women’s sports. Overall, the Pre-Game Mixer at Ruth’s Chris was a fantastic way to spend an evening networking and enjoying food and drinks before heading over to Memorial Gym to watch the game!
One of the stand out aspects of the evening was the Q&A session with Davis and Mooney, hosted by Nashville Sports Council Board Member Pat Pierce. Pierce asked the former stars many questions about their college basketball careers as well as their lives today.
On life as a college athlete:
Pierce: “What was the biggest challenge you faced as a college athlete?”
Davis: “The biggest challenge I faced was figuring out how to deal with Pat Summit…the stares, the yelling, et cetera. Luckily I came from a school with a military coach so I was well equipped to deal with the pressure.”
Mooney: “The biggest challenge I faced was learning how to read the game.”
The impact of playing college basketball on their careers:
Mooney: “I work for an organization Harvest Inn in South Nashville, and it offers holistic services including health and fitness, and educational offerings. I am fortunate enough to be in charge of a program that combined sports and education without having to coach or teach directly. I’ve been there for four and a half years, and love it.”
Davis: “I wanted to be a physical therapist, and I had taught and coached prior to where I am today. I had the opportunity to become a trainer from those jobs. Basketball led me to a strong interest in the physical body so being a trainer combined that interest with promoting wellness.”
The evening then moved from serious questions to a focus on the fun of the game and the rivalry.
Davis: “If I were playing we (Lady Vols) would definitely win, but you have to be patient us. I’m picking the the Lady Vols to win it tonight!”
Mooney: “I’m very impressed with the defensive efforts of the ‘Dores this year, and I think they’re going to win it tonight.”