The old saying of “where there’s a will, there’s a way” takes on a bit of a different tune at the Indian River High School, and it’s a tremendous opportunity for the school’s girls’ athletic programs.
In an effort to create more opportunities for the female student-athletes, IRHS and global athletic apparel company Under Armour, as well as BSN Sports, have joined forces in the team sports campaign “Women of Will.”
The mantra: “UA Women of Will. Will Finds a Way.”
The partnership is a three-year agreement between the entities, with UA becoming the official brand supplying uniforms and apparel for training and game day, with an exclusive “Women of Will” branding and apparel package.
“We are very excited to partner with one of the most innovative and respected companies in the world, while promoting all female athletics.” said Todd Fuhrmann. “This new deal gives us a greater opportunity to enhance our overall athlete experience at Indian River, and puts us on a stage with some of the top high school and college athletics programs in the country.
“It offers our women something specifically for them. It allows them to show and highlight their accomplishments and achievements and their abilities and strengths as female athletes. It puts them in a little bit of a different category personally — mentally and physically. It really focuses a lot on our women’s sports. It provides opportunities that these young ladies may not have normally.
“We have an opportunity to work with Under Armour on apparel and scholarship opportunities and things of that nature — not only locally, but nationally,” Fuhrmann added. “We are hoping that at some point something will be coming out for the boys. We are working on that, and are at the forefront of that.”
The Women of Will campaign is designed as a celebration of female athletes: those who hunger for greatness. “We recognize those who aim too high, who dare to rewrite expectations, and put in the work when no one is watching. We believe our own bold claims, and lift ourselves together when no one expects us to go anywhere at all.”
“I think it’s a really great opportunity for our school that we get to partner with Under Armour,” said IR senior Drew Szlasa. “It will create a lot more opportunities for girls that play sports. The Women of Will scholarship is another great opportunity for the senior girls as well. I really like the new uniforms. They are a lot easier to run in.”
Fellow seniors Morgan McGee and Jess Rybicki echoed Szlasa’s sentiments on the new program.
“I think it’s really exciting and a really good opportunity for our program,” McGee said. “It gives us a lot of new opportunities that we weren’t able to have previously, including the scholarship chances.”
“I think it’s a really good company, and a good brand for our uniforms,” added Rybicki. “We have some great opportunities — the seniors especially — with the scholarship program that is a part of this. It’s just going to be great for everyone involved.”
IR is one of just two schools — Smyrna being the other — that currently have the exclusive partnership with UA and BSN Sports.
Among the other perks of being in the partnership are that all “Women of Will” teams are outfitted head-to-toe in Under Armour uniforms, warm-ups, team backpacks and coaches gear. There is a significant discount on UA footwear for the athletes to purchase. There are also online team stores for fans to purchase gear to support their favorite Green & Gold teams.
And then there is the scholarship program and the “Women of Will” graduation award, as well as a “Women of Will” Hall of Fame award. UA will also provide free state championship shirts to any team that reaches the pinnacle of their respective sport.
There’s much positive energy in place now for the girls’ athletic programs at IR for the upcoming season. Now, all they need is the approval from the state to begin practicing and playing, and that is likely around the corner as well.