Playing Time | Teen Ink

Playing Time

April 25, 2008
By Anonymous

I was the new kid on the block. No one paid any attention to me. That was all going to change when basketball try-outs started. Running suicides, sprinting the mile, dribbling until my hands bled, and shooting until I couldn't even see the hoop any more. 2 days before tryouts, I met the coach. His name was Coach Barry.

There were finally here, 5 days of intense training, I thought to myself. We had the same type of any school. We had Varsity, JV, and freshmen. I was a freshmen. That following Monday, the coaches posted the teams in the boys locker room. I took a quick glance at it and saw that my name was on 2 of the sheets: Varsity and JV. I went to talk to the coach about it. He told me that he wanted me to be on 2 teams but he could only have me on one. So he told me to choose one. Of course I choose the varsity team.

We had 20 practices until game day. They were all 2-a-days, so really it was only 10 days of practice. There it was, the first game. I got so nervous. After the game was done I wondered why I wasn't sweaty. It was because I didn't play. I thought this was a one time thing. All our games that the team played I didn't play at all. I stared to think of myself as the bench warmer. I was so bummed out. Whenever I touch a ball it didn't feel the same, it was a firey ball of fire because of all the work I put in it. Our next game was a week away and I was thinking about trying to quit, but I stuck through it and didn't quit.

Our record was 20-0. A perfect record, and our game was tomorrow. I didn't practice the night before because I knew I was going to bench it like always. I had always practiced the 3 point shot to win it. I did a fake imitation of the crowd counting down. I would always make it, I was that good.

Before the game, the coach wanted to talk to me. He told me that I was going to be starting at point guard! My mouth, an anchor, dropped to the floor with surprise. After he told me that all I did was practice dribbling and shooting. I didn't want to run any drills because I was trying to get prepared.

The first 2 minutes of the game I was trying to make good plays but all I did was mess up. Coach took me out and all my hopes of being the star of the game sank like the Titanic. Coach put in another point guard that i didn't like. As we reached half-time i didn't feel like shooting around.

People running, to get more points that I lost. I almost fell asleep because I wasn't doing anything. I glanced up at the clock and it had only 5 seconds left. Coach came over and put me in! I was at shooting guard though. I figured out what he wanted me to do... shoot the game winning shot.

I look up at the scoreboard and it said 63-61. We were losing. I felt my hands start to shake. Our team tried to pass it in but they blocked it and I was there to get the ball. I bolted down the court with the ball in my left hand. Right as I reached to the three point line there was .5 seconds left the guy was covering me so tight that i had no chance of getting the ball in the hoop. I heaved it up and hoped that it was going to go in. It didn't and I fell to the ground. All of a sudden I heard a whistle. I had gotten fouled. I was at the line shooting 3 shots.

Time slowed down like the world stopped turning or something. I looked at all the fans. I couldn't see their faces because they didn't want to watch. I stepped to the line and looked at the rim. My teammates came up to me and told me it was okay if I won it or tie it or even lose it. The first shot i want thinking about anything but that ball going in the basketball hoop. I released that ball from my hands and it floated and made a swish sound, my favorite sound ever. The second shot I started to worry because I didn't want to let my team down. When I was shooting it, all I thought about was the crowd and if I missed they would all hate me for missing that shot. This shot, the ball felt heavier, and slipper. After I shot it I didn't look at it i turned at it. Shooting the ball it seemed to slip from my hands. The crowd shouted and that's how i knew it went in. The third was had the most pressure.... I just shot it without any kind of timing or anything. It hit the rim and the other team jumped up and down but then I heard another whistle. They stepped on the line and got a foul. The time was at .5 seconds left because they started the clock when the ball hit the rim. The officials set the clock for another 2 seconds.

We had this play where 2 of our guys are a distraction and one person inbounded the ball and another guy ran down court to get the ball and shoot the last second shot. Then began to run the play and I saw that the person who was supposed to shoot it didn't know what to do because he wasn't paying attention. I knew what I had to do... Try and get the ball and shoot it. After he threw it in I sprinted to it and got it 1.4 seconds left.. I ran to do the lay-up and i made it but I heard another whistle. He said the guy hacked me but I didn't feel it because I was trying to get the points. I didn't notice it at first but now I did I hurt my ankle really bad. I had to go and sit the bench and so our best free throw shooter came to shoot it for our team. The first shot.... it was good. This is what I liked, the constant pressure. I was put in again before he shot it. I saw it go up and i thought it was good, but it ended up being off so we got the rebound and i got the ball. I was at 3 point line and i counted down with the clock.... 1..... I put it up and I couldn't believe my eyes it went it !!!!! After the game I told the coach that I never crack under pressure and he chuckled and said we will see about that next year.

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This article has 1 comment.

on Oct. 22 2008 at 4:54 pm
This story is really good because it would be really cool to have to sit on the bench the whole year and then get to go in and win the game for your team. However it would also make you really nervous to know that if you missed you would let your whole team down, but getting that chance would be so exciting and actually making it would be incredible. I think this is a great and really exciting story.