State Cup “We are the champions, my friends”

March 29, 2011
It was the morning of the final. The state final. We got in the car. The drive was about one hour. After what seemed like a day’s worth of driving, we were there.
It was still early in the morning, still cold and wet. We got into our warm up and my team starting talking. Some of them were more focused then normal. Some were more relaxed than normal. I just tried to be myself. I was ready. I was nervous, and anxious, but ready. We did this thing were the refs lead us one the field in a line, like we were professionals. After we waved to our parents, we huddled up, and the game started. Once the game started my nerves settled down, but not all my teammates were as settled down as I was. The ball skipped past my defender because he tried to kick it out of the air instead of letting the ball run past him. And just like that is was a one on one, and the striker hit an upper 90 shot. 0-1. The first goal we had given up the whole tournament. Hopefully that would be a wake up call to the team. We responded with a goal of our own. When it was half time it was still tied at 1-1. Shortly out of half time we came out and scored. 2-1. Then again with 20 minutes left we score. 3-1. Our parents had a roar when our goal went in. The other parents were yelling at the refs, I guess to blame the goal on someone other than them self. The level of intensity in the game just grew exponentially. They start to bring defenders to play striker and finally score past a diving me with about 10 minutes left. 3-2. They are trying so desperately to score an equalizer. With time running down, a last cross comes into the box. I come out to get it. I get my gloves on it. I catch it just as I run into the striker. Tick tock. The clock runs down. I drop kick it up the field and 10 seconds later we win. They all ran to dog pile on me in celebration. I had never one a final before that. Our team hadn’t won one before that. We celebrated long hours after the game. What a way to win the State Cup. I learned from this is how to control nervousness and stick with your team through tough times.

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