Win or go home.
That’s what today’s game came down to.
It was a shot she’d made hundreds of times in practice, in that alone time in the gym when no one was there, during the games throughout her career.
It should have never come to this shot. Many baskets, missed. A game plan against them that was successful. A defense that was leaky. Rebounding that simply wasn’t there when needed.
She’d carry the team today. Almost half the points scored were because of the various post moves put on her opponent. She’s put her team on her back where others could not.
Today, that one shot came up short. The season is done. But a quote from the press conference after the game gives me hope, not from her, but a teammate. I would guess this quote was echoing her mind too:
“I’m not going to make excuses for how I played, coming back and working harder than I ever have is all I can do.”
That one shot will lead to more practice, more challenges, and more time in the gym getting ready for more games like this. I hope so because this game was a bitter pill to swallow for all of us.
The next time this happens, that one shot will fall, and the team will celebrate.
Just like that mourned that one shot today.
March 20, 2022 at 8:28 pm
I love this! I am amazed at the composure and mindset of these athletes.
March 20, 2022 at 9:00 pm
I appreciate the perspectives in this slice: how that one shot was the culmination of so many other elements in this game, some worth celebrating, others pinpointing flaws; and also the motivation that the shooter took from coming up short. She sounds like a force who will demand much more reckoning in her playing career.
March 21, 2022 at 7:11 am
This is an awesome piece of writing-perhaps you can send a copy to ‘the one shot girl’ who inspired it. I think she would love it! I anxiously read through the piece hoping she would make that shot and felt as disappointed as the audience did.
March 21, 2022 at 10:46 am
Thank you! It was tough to write because as a coach, I’ve seen that happen so many times. It brings up old games where I wish we could have done a couple of things different to change that path. But, what is done is done. We learn and go forward! 🙂
March 21, 2022 at 10:56 am
You have me thinking about all the times when games come down to that “one shot,” whichever way they happen to go down. And yes, you are right. It’s never *really* about just that one shot, it’s about all the mistakes and victories and breaks leading right up to that very point. It’s both the beauty and heartbreak of it all.
Hmmm…metaphor me is thinking there’s more to this than meets the eye…
Thanks for this great post!
March 21, 2022 at 6:09 pm
So tough for the athletes when it’s that close, but I also suppose when it isn’t close at all. Just hard to lose, I guess. Let’s cheer the effort and look to brighter days.