The boys ended their basketball season last weekend.
As much as I love the freedom of a completed season, it's always bittersweet. I love sports. I love watching sports. And nothing is more fun than watching my own kids playing sports.
It was William and Lincoln's first time playing on a basketball team. Brigham's second.
I'm going down the line, oldest to youngest, sharing my thoughts about their seasons so I can look back and see how they've improved as they continue playing (assuming that they DO continue playing.)
Lincoln. This kid had no concept of the game besides getting the ball in the hoop (whether he did or not is another adorable story).
I think our problem stemmed from the fact that for a year now, our basketball hoop has sported a cracked, broken backboard with a huge hole in the middle. Compliments of Brigham and William's BB guns. Ben was none-too pleased. The BB guns have been in TIMEOUT since the infraction:). This has pretty much nixed our ability to play ball. Hence, Lincoln's ignorance. (Ben's passion for football is another reason, too. They'd play football with Dad all day long if they could.)
Ignorance isn't all bad. Lincoln made me roll in my chair several times this season. My favorite parts were:
1. Lincoln played on a carpeted gym floor (strange). There are hop-scotch patterns on the floor. Sometimes, as Lincoln ran down the court he would follow the hop scotch boards, hopping on one foot, two feet, one foot, and so on. Can you picture it? HILARIOUS. And he didn't even care. He'd just run down the court smiling, completely oblivious to where he needed to be.
2. Whenever Lincoln would run past our family on the sidelines, he'd run off the court, KISS Sam, run back onto the court and keep playing. I think the game always came second to him.
3. Lincoln scored his FIRST basket of the season during the LAST game of the season. He thought he was the BEST player out there. I love that kid.
This was a great first-season. He didn't care about winning or losing. He had fun. He still wants to play next year. That's a success in my book.
William blossomed the most this year. He started out hardly able to dribble (remember football?). Once he grasped the game, he became a force to be reckoned with. I'd say he's better at defense, but with more time and practice I can see him as a great player. One thing I love about William is his quiet confidence. He doesn't care about looking silly, or making mistakes. He just keeps on playing and trying, even if he messes up.
Oh, and I died whenever I noticed William wearing his SANTA CLAUS socks at games (see above. Chocolate-brown socks with red trim. Nice.)!
Brigham played on a team with all of his friends. This was good and bad. Good, because he always had fun with his buddies. Good, because they were so supportive of each other. Bad, because Brigham cares about what other people think. He's a people-pleaser like his mother (ahem). As a result he'd often pass the ball to his more-confident friends who called his name for a pass. He was afraid to dribble because he didn't want to mess-up (remember football?). I think he missed out on some real growth opportunities because he was afraid to put himself out there (and dribble, darn it). You learn by making mistakes. Brigham HATES making mistakes.
I'm going to make a concerted effort to get out there with Brigham this summer and play and play and play. He has the ability, he just needs to know, himself, that he CAN do it. Confidence (like when he plays football:).
Thankfully, Brigham had a great attitude about the game. Playing-time was based more on skill in his age-group. He didn't play as much as other kids, but he didn't seem to care (phew). He celebrated the team's victories with a good attitude. They were his buddies, they did well, he was happy.
(If anything, I was the one having a hard time about playing-time. I think in city leagues all the kids should have equal playing time, whether they stink or are the star player. Once they reach middle school and high school, sure, base their playing-time on skill. For now, let them learn the skills and have opportunities to improve. I kept my mouth shut, however. I didn't want to embarrass Brigham by stirring the pot with my complaint.)
All in all, I loved watching the boys play this winter. Our Saturdays were filled with three games every weekend. We always got doughnuts afterwards. A fattening, calorie-laden tradition the kids LIVED for. Every week I told myself I'd pass on the doughnuts and every week I'd eat one of those cream-filled ones with chocolate on top. Hea-ven (or, hell, depending on how you look at it!)
It's so fun spending time together like this, cheering each other on, the kids running around with other teammates' siblings, being active, getting excited during the games, whooping and hollering at the kids when they did well, and even dealing with Lincoln's antics when he was SOOOOO ready to go home. It was all so fun.
Gosh, I love sports.
(What am I going to do if Annie wants to be a cheerleader? Oh, dear.)