UTSA women’s basketball team talks teamwork, trust with Air Force pilots

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Stormy Archer
  • 502nd Air Base Wing Public Affairs

Members of the University of Texas San Antonio women’s basketball team visited Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph Sept. 25.

The visit gave the team a chance to talk to Airmen about the importance of teamwork and commitment.

“I thought it was important for our team to see commitment and teamwork at the highest level,” said Kristen Holt, UTSA women’s basketball team head coach. “The men and women of our military put their lives on the line every day and their team has to function under trust. I hope our team understands that it is not the most talented person or team that wins but the team that is committed to a common goal, and that selflessness has to be at the core of achieving that goal. Playing for one another. Fighting for one another.”

Maj. Gen. Patrick Doherty, 19th Air Force commander, spoke to the players before their tour of the 560th Flying Training Squadron at JBSA-Randolph, and told the team that the quality he values most in Airmen is hustle, and someone who does not have the capacity to give up.

“No matter what the situation or score is, these individuals are always the same principled character that has the highest standard of excellence,” Doherty said. “That quality is so incredibly valuable.”

During their visit the players and coaches got an up-close view of how the Air Force trains pilots and about the history and heritage of flying training at JBSA-Randolph.

“My visit to Randolph was amazing,” said sophomore Karrinton Donald, UTSA women’s basketball player. “I really enjoyed learning about the history of the base. I also had a great time experiencing what it is like to be in the cockpit of one of the fighter airplanes. After the Q&A session with Gen. Doherty, I loved how there were so many similarities between the teamwork aspect of being in the Air Force and being on a basketball team. I truly enjoyed the entire visit.”


Senior Kourtney Kekec said the visit was enriching and the importance of leadership and determination is something the team and the Air Force have in common.


“Their team goals and “all-for-one” mentality is something all great sports teams have, and it was nice to have the principle reinforced with something far bigger than athletics,” Kekec said. “My team and I loved listening to all the experiences they shared, as well as all the insight on team building. We were all very grateful for the opportunity to learn from these amazing individuals.”


Meeting with members of the community and talking about what Airmen do every day helps strengthen the partnership between JBSA and San Antonio.

“San Antonio and its surrounding communities have always been huge supporters of the Air Force and the military, in general,” Doherty said. “That’s why it’s called ‘Military City USA.’ That comes with an inherent trust between the community leaders and the military leaders that we will always work together to improve the well being of our citizens and Airmen.


“While the team was visiting, they asked about how trust is developed between team members," the general said. "There are two kinds of trust: inherent and earned. In the military, we all inherently trust one another because we all signed the same dotted line to serve together. Our reasons may be different, but this establishes a baseline from which we build upon.


“Then, through experience, training, and even combat, our relationships are developed and our trust becomes stronger. This is the earned trust; because this person next to me has stood shoulder to shoulder with me through the same experiences, I trust them more … at times, with my life," Doherty added. "The same applies to the women on the basketball team.  They inherently trust one another because they have the desire to play and to win … a common goal.  But through practices, games, wins and losses, their trust is strengthened.”