“What’s In A Number” is the latest addition to SpiderVoices. In this feature, we’ll dive into the meaning behind some of the numbers that Spiders wear on their backs. This week, women’s basketball player Alicia Hudalla explains the meaning behind her #14.
Sports have been a part of my life ever since I was oldest to dribble a soccer ball.
For much of my youth, I spent my time either on a soccer field or a basketball court. Soccer was first, but basketball quickly came along when I joined the team at my small, private school growing up.
After playing my first season of organized basketball during my fifth grade year, my coach suggested that I join an AAU team here in town.
My basketball career, and really my life, changed when I got to U-Turn and met Max Coats.
Max was and always will be one of the biggest influences on my life. He was not only my AAU coach, he was a mentor, friend and an inspiration to me. He pushed me to work harder than I had ever worked because he believed in me.
I wouldn’t be here at Richmond without Max. When I joined U-Turn, he gave me the #14 jersey and told me that it fit me. Ever since then, I’ve won #14 every single year. I have a box of jerseys at my parents house with different #14 jerseys because every time I see one, I think of Max.
This past April, Max lost his battle with cancer. I will never forget him. He remains an integral part of my life today and always will be a part of me. I was blessed with the opportunity to speak at his funeral to try and show people exactly the type of man Max was and the influence he had on my life.
Every time I put on that #14 jersey, I think of Max. He’s the reason I’m blessed with the opportunity to play the game I love at a school I love.