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Under Pressure This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   Two years ago when I played football, I was going to try my luck as quarterback. I could throw a good fast spiral and I thought I could hack it. Practices went pretty well since doing drills was easy. But when it was time for a scrimmage against the seniors and juniors, I was nervous. I remember sitting in the sun, holding the football so tight it seemed a part of me, and saying, "Be calm, it's only a game."

The coach called, "Sophomores!" When I got the play, I knew how to run it, since it was a simple one, but when I went into the huddle, somehow I forgot what I was doing. I was trying to take control of my nerves by saying, "I can do this." After I told the other guys what to do, they went into formation, but when I went to the center, I froze. I was standing under the hot sun, sweating to death, yet frozen with fear.

When I started my cadence, I wanted to back out from the center. But I couldn't. Something was telling me to stay there. Before I knew it, I yelled, "Go!" The ball zoomed into my hands. I backed out and ran to my left, faked to the halfback, and ran with the tailback to pitch the ball to him. That was my last time as quarterback. Even though I did pretty well on that play, I just couldn't handle the pressure. n


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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