The Exhileration

December 2, 2009
By tortor BRONZE, Des Peres, Missouri
tortor BRONZE, Des Peres, Missouri
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

My heart was beating faster and faster every time I pitched the ball. I had no idea what was going through the batter’s head. The sun was an oven, baking us to a crisp. Everyone’s body ached from tiredness, and our faces were red from exhaustion. Our opponents were wearing red jerseys along with gray pants; their jerseys read the name Sacred Heart. We played them every year, sometimes even twice, always winning. This was the championship game that would decide who would win the CYC District Title, and continue on to play at County.

“Come on number 3 you got this, 2 more,” were the words that I could hear from the field of teammates behind me. The side lines were crowded with parents, siblings, and friends that belonged to both teams; us Saint Gerard Majella and them Sacred Heart. Constant yelling and chanting for the teams to do their best was all I could hear. Since I was the pitcher I was continuously looking at home plate and the woods behind the fence. The birds and crickets were chirping along together as if they were chanting Go SGM Go. It was the bottom of the last inning, two outs, and the field was still, almost eerie.

As I approached the mound I thought of nothing else except about pitching the ball. The next batter was up and I threw a fast ball; strike one. The next pitch was a ball followed by another. Then I took a step back, relaxed and threw the next pitch into Alex’s glove; strike two. Then I got back on the dirt-covered mound and threw another pitch, and the next thing I knew, my teammates behind me were screaming and jumping for joy. I turned around and asked Amy what was going on. She said, “We won!” and came up and gave me a massive hug as did the rest of the team. We all gathered together and couldn’t have been happier. I struck out the last batter to win the district championship game versus Sacred Heart.

That game was the most intense game I had ever played when I was young. I was oblivious as to what was going on after I threw that pitch; it was like I was ready for the next intense inning. The passion was brought from both teams, but in the end my spirited team St. Gerard Majella won.

In any sport that I have played, I’ve been part of a team, which is like a family to me. My first actual team experience, when it mattered, was when I was playing softball. You have that bond that no one else except the team can feel and experience. Everyone knows you better and you all feel the same and become one; like sisters. Being on a team and being part of something makes me feel larger than myself. People are dependent on you and your ability. When I was on the field, I was needed to pitch, and people were relying on me, and just me, out of all the other pitchers in the championship game. The feeling you have is indescribable. Being together many times a week for long periods of time like practices and games, you get to understand everyone and become friends with people you may not have ever known otherwise. No matter wheat, you’re a team and that’s all that matters.

Being on my softball team made me realize how much I grew together with other people and to understand how important team bonding is. I still remember most of the girls that I played with, and I am still friends with most of them till this day. Some of the girls were Amy Becker, Alex Zielinski, The Pucketts, Kate Spitznagle, Julia Sinks, Maria Lemakis, and much more. On the opponents team I always remembered one girl, because she was the rival pitcher against our team; it was Rachel Emmett. It turned out that I played with her on a different team later during my softball career, and am friends with her still to this day. I don’t know what I would do not being part of a team or a group that I can express how I feel and do what I love, just like everyone else on the team can do too. Having the same desire to win and wanting to be your best is what everyone on the team wishes. My softball experience made me want to continue to be part of a sport and want to feel the team connectedness that you feel when you’re together with your teammates. Ever since, I’ve played a sport and to this day I play basketball. I love the sensation of being part of a team.

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