Thursday, March 2, 2017

Kidlet Basketball

Another basketball season has come and gone for the kidlets - filled with great coaching, friendships, and life lessons that will serve them well beyond the court.

Jack coached BOTH kids' teams PLUS his high school girls. Nothing like balancing 14-18 yr old girls during the week and 4-5 yr boys and girls plus 6-8 yr old girls on the weekends. Mama, meanwhile, served as team manager (aka: email communicator to parents, in charge of snack sign-up, photographer, etc).

I can't say enough of Jack's patience in being a youth sports coach. I helped him on the bench for a few games of the 1st-2nd grade girls team and I do not know how he can remain so calm! Not only that, but he's incredibly determined to teach our children and their friends the fundamentals at this age. He made it very clear to parents and players that we were focusing on developing a love for the game and the skills necessary to compete in the coming years at a more competitive level. There's a reason why he's my favorite coach! :) (shout-out to the amazing assistant coaches Jack had in both Lil' Dribblers and 1st-2nd grade, too - it takes a small army!)

Braxton enjoyed Lil' Dribblers with a team filled with buddies from school and church. He may not have known where the ball was at all times, but the little dude knew what the score was and enthusiastically yelled it out every time either team scored (so the entire gym could hear).

As you can see, he was all smiles and enjoyed his last game on the big court of the Hutchinson Sports Arena.

Mackie, meanwhile, enjoyed her first year playing in the "big girl" league, including weekly practices and Saturday games in the 1st-2nd grade Hutch Rec league. Most of her teammates were 1st graders, with a few 2nd graders. They were a very green team, with only one of the 2nd graders playing in the league the year before. It was incredible to see the growth of the entire group and how they developed into aggressive, hustling basketball players who (we hope!) had fun and fell in love with the game.

I loved seeing Mackie's personal growth of the game this season. The lightbulb came on as she realized how much fun it was to grab the ball, play aggressive defense, dive on the floor, dribble, and shoot. She spent several afternoons and weekends shooting and dribbling in the driveway on her own accord - we usually had to peel her away so she could come inside to eat dinner. Her hard work and determination paid off as she scored her first goal during the end-of-the-season tournament. 

These girls took 3rd place at the tournament, bouncing back from a tough loss to the fellow 2nd grade Buhler team. 

We're so proud of both kids and can't wait until next year!

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