U14 Boys Basketball
By Shiyao Marcus Lam S2S
The quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson, “Our greatest glory is not in never failing, but in rising up every time we fail.” is very relevant to our U14 basketball season. We had a roller coaster season full of highs and lows where we faced challenges from many schools, put in our best effort in each game and yet lost most of the matches. But in my opinion, our team has benefitted the most out of this experience.
After each match, our team would huddle up and regroup ourselves. We would assess what went wrong and what went right in each game. We reflected on some of the weak links in our team, one of which being our ability to play aggressively and grab rebounds as we saw teams that were able to put up 5 shots on each possession. We pinpointed weaknesses like this, and we would work on improving on our game during the season. Assess, reflect, practice, and improve. This was done after each game and we would then come back stronger in the next game.
In early December 2018, we received an invitation to play a friendly game, against an Italian junior basketball club, My Basket Genova. This team travel the world every year to places all over Asia and Europe. To be honest, I was a bit intimidated. Nonetheless, I kept my head up and kept in mind, all we had learned from our games, and we went into this game more motivated than ever. Although we still lost the match, we managed to break 30-points in that game, fulfilling our 30-point goal that we set out to achieve at the beginning of the season. We played the best game of our time. All of us were ecstatic and proud. Watching the video of the game, I could see the difference between this game, and our games before. We managed to communicate better, call for screens and rolls, and thus open up many scoring opportunities. We played with more team cohesion, and executed our tactics well. We could finally see pieces of our puzzle fitting in.
In April, our team was invited to the DSA invitational tournament. This was a real test of our teamwork. We were put up against more experienced teams, comprised of handpicked players from all over Asia. Throughout the 3-day tournament, we were challenged and pushed to the brink of our ability. After each match, we would once again run through same routine of reflection and improving. Our team would find a place in the school, sit down, and discuss. Each match, we would fall short of something, like lack of pick-and-rolls, weak rebounding, lack of aggressive defence (on the shooter), etc. In our matches against HKIS and Harrow, we were able to see our hard work pay off as our level of play ascended above our performance in our regular season. We played efficiently during our offense and made safer passes, reducing our turnovers immensely (which was one of our weaknesses in our regular season).
Overall, the DSA tournament was a bonus to our CCA this year, and brought our team even closer together. It was a very eye-opening experience, and a wonderful time to see how far our team has come this year. Nevertheless, this tournament, and our game against My Basket Genova, represents our team’s best endeavours. We know there are still much improvement to be made. We have learned from our losses and treated them as learning opportunities for our benefit and growth. Our U14 experience has served as a major step in our team improving in the future. We are all happy to see our team’s evolution, and the personal growth of each of our team members throughout the CCA, and to end the season knowing that we gave it our all. GO LIONS!