Red Rocks

Red Rocks

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Lacrimae Rerum

State Championship game in Grand Forks Saturday afternoon. The wind is howling out of the west, Century puts the youngest team ever to appear in the tournament on the field (2 seniors, 3 juniors, 7 sophomores, and 4 freshmen) and play to a 1-1 tie after regulation.

In the first 10 minute overtime there weren't many chances to score and you could really see the fatigue setting in on both teams. They were almost 8 minutes in to the 2nd overtime and 2 minutes from a shootout when West Fargo put in the game winner. Our boys certainly felt bad - they knew they had had some opportunities they hadn't been able to take advantage of - but they kept there heads up and were good sports through all the celebrating and awards.

I was sad for the Seniors who had worked so hard and trusted all those young players to help get them a championship, but the underclassmen get another (or two, or three!) shots at it and will have incredible experience under their belts.

Coach Jahnke got this team to perform at an amazing level and helped them keep their heads even when they were under pressure. He can probably think of dozens of could have, should have, would have scenarios over the season, but you've got to play with the team and the players you have, and he sent several clear messages about expectations and consequences. I believe that all those young men are the better for the experience.

Human beings are driven to succeed. Our culture places great value on "winning," whatever the situation, but there are other great words to describe (in this case high school soccer) behaviors - Perseverence, Teamwork, Dedication, Trust, Fearlessness - that I think Hunter and his teammates brought to the pitch and took back home to their families last night.

2010 Patriots, congratulations on a fine season, this fan enjoyed the ride.

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