(NCHB = National Christian Homeschool Basketball)
But you know the #1 thing I learned was that this trip wasn’t about ME! It was mainly about the 11 guys in the above picture (and their 3 coaches). It was THEIR tournament, after all. Anything I got to do for myself there was a bonus.
We had a pretty good tournament! The boys played 5 games (one per day).
The first game was a loss. Sad. It was actually against a team my son Drew had played before at a tournament near Festus/St. Louis with his old team!! (Small world!) He played a few minutes (he’s not a varsity starter) and got a rebound.
The second game, our boys came out fighting!! And they won – pretty big! I think Drew played a few minutes.
The third game was a nail-biter!!! We had to go into overtime … but we squeaked out the win. Drew couldn’t play in this game as we needed our A-Team out there the entire time.
The fourth games was a nail-biter, too; but we won. PHEW! Drew played a few minutes… and contributed 2 points!!
The fifth game was a sad, sad loss. (Drew played about 2 minutes, too.) It was one of those games that made us spectator moms absolutely crazy!! For a while our boys were hitting every basket and were ahead. Then suddenly, they fell apart and got sloppy, and the opponents caught up. Then our boys caught on fire again and got ahead. Then for a while, they couldn’t hit anything!! (meanwhile, the other team had this crazy good, 3-point shooter whom we neglected to guard, who would just hit 3 pointer after 3 pointer). I think the coaches motivated our boys in time outs and at half time somewhat … and so they’d play amazing … and then one player would make a bad pass, another would try some kind of fancy lay-up that didn’t work out, and so on. In the last seconds of the game, our teams were TIED!!!! But the other team’s neglected 3 point shooter was standing in his sweet spot … wide open … and got the ball and scored 3 points at the last second. A tough loss.
Our guys did get 2nd place (out of 8 teams) for their bracket for having 3 wins, 2 losses. There were over 300 teams at this tourney … so the awards ceremony took FOR.EV.ER!!!!!!!!! But well worth it to see our boys recognized!! The ceremony lasted until about 10:30 p.m. on Friday night. They also had a slam dunk contest, let the All-American teams play for a while, etc.
I had a totally different vision for how this whole week would pan out: I thought we’d “hotel school” a little bit and then go HAVE FUN!! I thought we’d spend more time with the 5 home school families who are also a part of our team – eat out with them; they’d discussed going to Bass Pro Shop, and other fun things. None of that really happened.
BUT the mom who came with us, a teacher at our school, was determined that the boys did a lot of this every day:
And so, MiMi, Annie-Belle, and I did a lot of this:
Thankfully, a friend came to see us on Wednesday – and saved us from the monotony!! I did get to spend lots of quality time with my girls since the girls’ basketball coach, who had invited herself along, spent most of her day helping with the hotel school thing, so they didn’t need me. By the way, she was an okay roommate to us – mainly she was with the boys, so she was only in our room to sleep and freshen up. That was all fine – except the one night she lost her room key … and had to call me to let her in … at 2:00 a.m. *sigh* (by they way, you ask what our guys were doing up at 2 a.m.?? – this was an exception because we played the three middle of the week games after 8:50 p.m., often after 9:30 p.m.!!! And particular night was after the over-time win – and our guys were KEYED UP and ready to party!! so we let them stay up past the usual curfew. They was probably the most fun they had the whole week!)
Speaking of the girls’ team coach … she totally bailed on us on Friday night. Once we got back to Arkansas, she was SUPPOSED TO drive the school van from the other mom’s house to the school – since the other mom lived about 15 miles from school and her house was on our route back. (I had to take my own van because there were too many people and too much STUFF along!!). BUT the coach’s husband took her to Branson straight from the tournament venue that night instead. SOOOO, we pondered and schemed and called some people who might be able to meet us and drive our boys home … but it worked out after all. After we dropped off the other mom at her house, I drove the school van – and one of the team boys drove MY van (with his parents’ permission) back to the school. It turned out ok … but yet again, another glitch in our well-made plans!!
I just have to say UGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!! (ok, I feel better.) But why do people just assume you can accommodate them when they just come and go as they want to – and someone has to end up being the responsible one, taking up the slack. yet again. (stop.)
I was reminded of my age as I pulled the school van into the school parking lot at 2:30 a.m. on Saturday morning … and more so in the 2 days that followed. I think I have fallen asleep any time I sat down this weekend, to include in church on Sunday!!
BUT overall, despite the major minor inconveniences, it was a GREAT experience!!! I made a new friend in the other mom who came along … she is a pastor’s wife in a nearby town, and we were able to have some really great conversations. We got to know the home school families from our team a little bit better, too. The boys all had a good time – no one got sick or injured (Praise the Lord!!) – and our bagpipe player got his required 5 hours of practice time in so his mommy should be very, very happy with us.
In the end, I can honestly say: I had FUN!!