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Saturday, March 13, 2010

Called for Skipping

Basketball season was a thrilling ride! Fourth grade ball had playoffs and a championship this year - a first for our family. It was great to watch these boys master some of the finer points of the game. Watching them successfully execute a pick and roll, cross-court pass, and awesome interceptions kept me on the edge of my seat all season. Their coach was mild-mannered and kept it light. The boys voted on a team name. "Pretty Little Pink Ponies" was flatly rejected - however, the team rallied around, "Cheese." Let me tell you, it's hard to not have fun cheering from the sidelines, "Go Cheese!" And then hearing the team huddle during a time out and end with hands in, chanting, "Cheese, Cheese, Cheese!" This team ended their season in a three way tie for first place. Each player gave the coach a different kind of cheese at their season-ending bash, to which he replied, "Next year, I wanna be team Lexus."

Second grade ball is the year the kids simply grow in their comfort on the court. A good coach helps the boys excel and prepares them to be competitive. Our son's team was great and enjoyed a winning season. His layups and foul shots became more reliable. They celebrated over ice cream today, earned bobblehead trophies, and came home happy, sweaty and tired.
First grade girls has got to be the most interesting, though. The refs are told not to blow their whistle too loud, so they don't scare the girls and make them cry. How funny is that?!

Coaching little girls vs older boys is quite the contrast. You can yell in at a ten year old boy, "stay on 23 and shut him down!" Where the same shout to a first-grade girl will elicit tears. So, hearing my husband give guidance from the sideline to our daughter is a riot, "You're doing great, sweetie!" He'll also send big brother over with "words of encouragement," to which she responds by pushing him away saying, "I know, I know, I know." The best part of the game today was when the ref blew his whistle and explained to one little girl that "skipping" down the court with the ball was not allowed. Several of the parents around me all broke out laughing.

If only we played our hearts out like that everyday - using that same passion and energy in everything we did. I think then I wouldn't mind if I got called for skipping.

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