Monday, December 6, 2010

Oh, What a Relief!

LegalMist's daughter's basketball team played an excellent game that came down to the last seconds of overtime on Friday evening. I am very proud of my daughter, even though she did not get a lot of playing time. She did well for the few minutes she was in, playing excellent defense and passing the ball for an assist.

She was disappointed that she didn't get to play more but, as I explained to her, she cannot expect to get a lot of playing time in her first game of the season when she is one of just a few 7th graders on a team of 7th and 8th graders, and the shortest kid on the court to boot. If she continues to play well and improve her skills, she may end up with more playing time per game as the season progresses.

Her team as a whole played great defense, blocking shots, rebounding, intercepting passes, and stealing the ball from the other team frequently. They also handled the ball well, with dead-on passes, good dribbling, and few turnovers. And on offense, they did a great job of finding the open player and taking appropriate shots.

Their shooting skills need improvement, however. Particularly free throws. Those should be "gimme" points, with very few misses. But her team missed quite a few. The other team's field goal and free throw percentages were somewhat better, which made it a very close game all the way, despite the frequent turnovers in favor of my daughter's team.

So I was worried when, in the last 1.4 seconds of overtime, my daughter's team was ahead by one point, and one of the other team's best scorers was taking a shot. One of our players fouled her (appropriately), and the other team's excellent player went to the line for two free throws. If she made them both, they would have won, as it was hugely unlikely our team could have even taken a shot, much less made one, in the remaining 1.4 seconds. (This is not the WNBA). If she even made one free throw, they would have tied and gone on to a second overtime.

It was a very stressful situation for the scorekeeper. I should know, because I had volunteered to fill in as scorekeeper.

And here, I digress so that you can more fully understand the stress that your poor attorney blogger was suffering... Holy cow, what a lot of things to track throughout the game! Things I was supposed to keep up with -- for both teams -- included:

* Who played and substituted in for each quarter. (For both teams, remember? There were a couple of times when I was still trying to write down who was in for both teams, and the coaches were already substituting in new players!!).

* For each quarter, I had to track each time a player attempted a shot, and whether it was missed or, if made, whether it was 2 or 3 points -- for both teams, remember?

* For each shot made, I had to track the team's total score -- for ... oh, you remember by now...

* I was supposed to document each free throw taken by any player, and whether it was a one point, two point, or one-and-one situation, and whether the free throws were missed or made, and, of course, the team's resulting total score.

* Each foul - tracked both for individual players and for each team as a whole, with the responsibility to let the referees know if / when either team's fouls put them into the penalty status for each half and/or whether any given player fouled out.

* Each timeout, along with whether it was a 30 second time out or a full time out, which quarter it was in, and which team and player (or coach) called it.

* The score at the end of each quarter, and at the end of the game.

* Double-check that the score at the end of each quarter on the scoreboard matched the totals at the top of my page for each team.

* Double-check that the score at the end of each quarter matched the totals for all the players, as marked for that quarter.

(I'm not really sure what I was supposed to do if those totals didn't match... fortunately, the issue didn't come up).

There may have been more things I was supposed to track, but I didn't. Couldn't. No way. It was hard enough to keep my (probably ADD) self focused on the game without getting distracted for even a few seconds, thereby missing something important like who just made that shot or who that foul was called on, while also writing down those listed things in little tiny columns that started to blur together after about two quarters. (Clearly, I must keep my day job. I do not have a bright future as an official scorer for the NBA / WNBA.)

And now, back to our regularly scheduled story:

So, the poor girl on the other team was making her "no pressure" last-second free throws with the outcome of the game hanging in the balance. We all watched, perched on the edge of our seats. She shot one, and it bounced off the rim. There would be no "win" for her team in this overtime... but she still had a chance to tie it up and score another chance to win in a second overtime.

At that point, I was literally praying that she would miss the second shot.... not so that my daughter's team would win (by then, I truly didn't care who won - it was a well-played game on both sides), but because I didn't think I could take the stress of trying to keep score accurately for yet another overtime period!

The second shot went up .... and it bounced around the rim of the basket a couple of times... but then it bounced out! - and my daughter's team won the game!

I felt bad for the girl who missed the shots . . . but oh-so-relieved that the game was not going to a second overtime!

I felt happy for my daughter and her team for their impressive and close win over an excellent opposing team . . . but mostly, I felt relieved that the game was not going to a second overtime!

Am I self-centered and inappropriately focused on my own well-being instead of my daughter's team's big win? Apparently so... But, oh, how happy I felt!!



LOLA said...

First, congrats to your daughter for doing her part. It's o.k. that it was small. It will get bigger. As for you, you are not self-centered blah blah blah. When my son played basketball, they asked me to be the scorekeeper a few times and I always begged off with the excuse that I had to watch my little one, when in reality, I knew I couldn't handle the job. You were very brave to help out. It really and truly is tough to be the scorekeeper. As I always told my kids, don't put yourself down because there are plenty of people who will do that job for you. Hooray for LegalMist!
Infinities of love,

Scope said...

Teach your daughter the most important basketball move: When throwing an elbow, do not wind up, the ref's will see it.

A quick jab, and always away from the ball.

Another classic is to draw a charge when changing sides of the floor by setting up infront of someone who isn't looking where they're going.