Lose As If You Enjoyed It For A Change

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The seconds on the scoreboard ticked away, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, and the buzzer sounded. It wasn’t a championship game, but it sure did change the way I viewed the game of basketball. We weren’t the best team in the league, but we were a family that knew how to play together. It was my freshman year in high school, and I remember the game like it was yesterday.

We were on the bus, on our way to Canter. We were playing a sectional game to win, and move on to the finals. The bus ride was quiet. Not many girls were having conversations, but everyone had their music playing in their ears. I blasted my music to get pumped for the game just like every other girl on the bus. When we arrived at Canter’s school, we walked to the locker room with pride. We got our uniforms on and our shoes laced with not much conversation. Then when every girl was ready, we talked about what we needed to do to win the game. We spoke about Canter’s good players, and how we needed to shut them down. Then we huddled together screaming, “1, 2, 3 team!” We ran out to the court with the Sidney crowd roaring, and warmed up for our big game. I remember the thoughts running through my head while we were warming up. I was the underdog, and I knew that I needed to do my part in the team and play my best without giving up. The seniors did not want that to be their last game of basketball, so I needed to step up my game.

The game went back and forth between us and Canter. The score stayed tight throughout the game, and the points kept adding up. I remember one play in the first half specifically, and I will never forget it. I received a pass from my teammate on a fast break while I was being guarded heavily, and I dribbled towards our basket with the clock ticking down from 10 seconds. I dribbled down the right side of the court, and stopped about a foot away from the basket. I faked out my defender, did a spin move, and finished with a lay in on the left side of the basket. The shot dropped to put us up by two, then halftime came and we were all tired. Every one of us was playing our hearts out. The score was close, so we knew that we had to make some baskets right off the bat in order to gain a better lead. We talked positive to each other because we knew we had to stay focused on the game and not drama. The second half passed by so fast. We were tied most of the fourth quarter until the last minute of the game. Canter was up by three. We got the ball and scored for two; we were down by one. The scoreboard ticked until the buzzer went off, and we were still down by one.

The Canter fans went crazy screaming, and yelling to the players as the players jumped and screamed in excitement. That was the first game that I cried, and saw my teammates cry together. We walked off the court with our heads down, which was a complete mistake. No matter the outcome of the game, every one of us should have held our heads up high, because we played incredible that game. We walked into the locker room, and we hugged every player on our team while saying “good game.” We were all devastated form the outcome of the game, yet we knew that we gave everything while we were playing. I remember being the last person to leave the locker room. I had a million thoughts running through my head, like “what could I have done better,” or “what did I do wrong?” After I walked out of the locker room, side by side with my best friend, our fans cheered at us as if we had just won the game. That was the first time I smiled that night, because I knew that they supported and believed in every single one of us girls whether we won or lost, and that felt like the best feeling in the world.

“Win as if you were used to it, lose as if you enjoyed it for a change.” That game taught me a lesson about my behavior, and how to act when situations are not always positive. No matter the outcome of the game, I learned that I had to respect the opposing team. We were a high school team, and our attitudes effected how people viewed our school.





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