Speech Graded.docx - Connor Kaniewski Effort Sportsmanship...

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Connor Kaniewski Effort, Sportsmanship, and Composure Noted baseball philosopher Yogi Berra once said, “Baseball is 90 percent mental. The other half is physical.” Yogi may have been a poor mathematician but he was accurate when he characterized sports as being more than physical effort---more than winning. It is also about effort, good sportsmanship and playing well--- with composure---under pressure. Permit me to share a personal experience that served to highlight these principles for me. My basketball team was playing St. Josaphat who was undefeated because they had two amazing tall players that could shoot from long range. At game time, I stepped onto the court feeling the pressure to win. Once my whole team arrived, including both of our coaches, we started to warm up for the huge game. After layup lines, the game clock showed four minutes. We sprinted to the middle of the court twice. I was ready. With a winning attitude, we went to the bench and Mr. Lothian, one of our coaches,
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announced the starting lineup. I was starting at guard and became nervous like a baby deer when it sees a hungry cheetah. Both teams’ starting lineups stepped on to the court. I knew it was time to shine. The head referee threw the ball up and our center Michael won the tip for us. The point guard Jonathan, received the ball from Michael and started to dribble up the court at a slow pace. Jonathan called out the offensive play, “Triangle Connor”, which meant that I was taking a shot. He dribbled to the left where I was standing and passed it to me. The left side, just inside the three-point line, was my favorite place on the court to take a shot. The opposing team’s biggest player started to run at me. He was a monster. I made a head fake to the left and dribbled to the right, beating the defender. I squared my feet to the front of the rim, bent my knees, and I let the ball go. Right after the ball left my hands, I knew that the ball was gonna drop through the net. I watched it go right through the net with a loud swish and the whole crowd applauded as I ran back on defense.
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