The Semi-finals game

September 17, 2008
By Blake Dodge, Morehead City, NC

My heart-beat was getting faster. I was so nervous. GO GO GO! These were some of the thoughts running through my head that semi-finals soccer game. My team, the spurs, versus our arch enemy, the Jacksonville Lancers. They were a talented team and when we played each other, no one new who would win. The last time we played them, we had won, but the game before that, they had. But this time our team was determined to beat them.
We wore sweatshirts and gloves as we quietly warmed up that cold winter morning. More and more people were gathering around the emerald green soccer fields. Frost still covered the ground where the sun had not yet reached. All of our cheeks were bright red. “Your nose looks like a cherry, Lauren.” I said.
“Ha-ha, very funny, Blake. Very funny.” She said replied unenthusiastically.
“Bring it in!” our coach yelled from across the field. He then gave us an encouraging speech, but I have to admit, I wasn’t listening. Too many thoughts were racing through my head. Coach finished his speech and we all stacked our hands together to do our cheer, “OOOO Spurs, stick em’ AHHHH!” We all jogged to our positions, the game had begun.
It was tied at 2:2 with less than five minutes left in the game. The temperature had risen drastically. I could feel a sweat drop running down my forehead. I thoughtlessly wiped it away. “Lookout!” I called to my teammate as a Lancer was coming at her fast from behind. But I was too late. My stomach dropped, they had gotten a breakaway. “NO!” was all I could think as I ran as fast as my legs would carry me towards #21, who was coming fast at our goal. My lungs were on fire, my legs weighed a million pounds, but I pushed harder and harder. From the sidelines, Mom and Dad were screaming, “Go! Go! Go!” But I couldn’t hear them. “FASTER!” I screamed to myself. Almost there! A little farther! BAM! We both fell down to the ground as the ball spun off to the side. Luckily, Marjan was running right behind me and jumped on the ball before another Lancer could touch it! She passed it out to the side where one of my teammates got it and took off.
TWEET! A cold, sharp sound rang out across the field. The second half was over, the score was still tied. We had to go to penalty kicks.
It was my turn to kick, I was the last one. It was tied, 4:4. If I made this shot, we would go to the finals. I was so nervous. The pressure was like a thousand pounds on my back. I could feel my heart-beat getting faster and faster. My hands were shaking. The ref blew the whistle; I took a breath and took my shot.
WAHOOOO! We all hugged each other and jumped in place. We had done it! We were going to the finals! I got in line behind the rest of my teammates to say “good game” to the Lancers. They had played hard. I ran to the sidelines to find my parents. I felt a smile spread across my face as I gave them a big hug.
That was one of the greatest days of my life and I’ll never forget it. I never would have thought that a soccer game could change the way that I thought. Now I know that if you work together and put your mind to it, nothing can stop you. My whole team worked together and we all tried our absolute hardest. Even though we were hot and tired, we kept on pushing no matter what. And that is the reason we won.

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