On October 28th, a rally was held for the men’s and women’s basketball teams, but as they came out onto the courts, the women got an unequal greeting compared to the men.
By: Eden Llodrá
The difference in greeting was immeasurably felt at the basketball rally on October 28th. The crowd sat down and clapped as the women came jogging out to stand in line with one another. Then, a short video was shown introducing the players. As the girls took their seats, the lights went off and the student section, naturally, got on their feet to greet the men’s team as the glow of the screen lit the sports stadium. The men’s video was played, looking newly edited, blasting bright red and blue. So, the women got applause, but the men got a standing ovation? In this lies under-representation and inequality right on Saint Mary’s home court.
When asked about the rally, junior Aine Colgan said “It was very noticeable who the favorite team was. The women’s team was barely cheered for, while the men’s team got a standing ovation.” Rather than an equal celebration of both hard-working teams, what mainly came across was the inequality shown through the way they were welcomed.
After the rally, sophomore Hannah Rapp on the women's basketball team said, “There is a lot more hype around and much more advertisement for the men’s team compared to the women’s.” This coming from a player on the team not only shows the need for change but also for education around the inequality between genders, especially within sports.
Rapp also mentioned that “The men's basketball schedule was advertised on the Saint Mary’s Instagram page and the women’s was not.” Without the proper and deserving advertising that the women deserve, the school and the students learn to continue promoting this inequality. Colgan said, “It's disappointing to see this happen at SMC, and I hope more people notice what is really happening.”
Moving forward, it is important that women’s basketball and all women’s sports teams get the representation and acknowledgment that they deserve. Rapp said, “I think the school could improve the coverage of women’s basketball. Even if it just means posting more on social media about our games and events that we are hosting so we can get as many students as possible out to support the team.” If students only see men’s games advertised, then that is all that they will be aware of, and continue normalizing the underrepresentation of women in sports.
The reaction of the students after the rally showed the women’s basketball team deserves just as much attention as the men’s team. They train the same, dedicate themselves the same, so why are they not treated and represented the same?
Melanie Moyer '22,