‘I treat my team like my kids’


Photo by Jessica Mangili

JV basketball and tennis coach Shannon Markley laughs at sophomore Leslei Lopez as she imitates her.

Rubi Rico

Shanon Markley— coach, teacher, and mother figure.

Markley is the coach for the boys and girls tennis team as well as current JV girls basketball. But she is not your “everyday” coach.

As told by the team, coach Markley isn’t exactly the “mean” coach you dread to see everyday at practice. “Coach Markley is cool and laid back but hard when she needs to be,” sophomore Charmaigne Gresham said.

Markley consider the girls she coaches family to her — as are all her teams. “I have a close relationship with all of my players,” Markley said. “They are my kids.”

The JV girls basketball team, definitely feels her love. “Coach Markley is a kind person,” sophomore Leslie Lopez said. “She really cares about all of us.”

Markley likes to treat her team with respect. “I treat them the same way I would if they were my kids,” she said. “I never put them down.” Rather than yelling at the girls and making them feel worse — Markley’s motherly senses kick in and she comforts them by telling them, “keep trying, never give up.”

Coach Markley is said by her team to be very supportive. “Whenever I do something wrong in the game she doesn’t just start to yell at me, she gives me tips on what I can do better,” Gresham said.

One may wonder why her coaching style isn’t like the typical aggressive coach. The answer is simple. “It is not all about winning,” Markley said. “It is about being a family and having a good time together.”

She would rather have her team lose and have a tight bond rather than them win and not like one another. For Markley it isn’t that difficult to balance her “mom” and coach side. When on the court, she is their coach — Markley is there to help them out when they need advice during a game or practice.

But if a player of hers is not exactly having the best day, that’s when she begins to play the mom role. Markley pulls them aside and figures out what’s wrong, and if there’s nothing wrong, she likes to sit down with all of her players and see what’s going on in their life anyway. “Coach Markley really is one of the best coaches,” sophomore Lupita Barbosa said. “We are so lucky to have her as our coach.’”