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Tuesday, March 1, 2011

The Final Buzzer

Tonight marked the conclusion of the basketball season for Heatly High. The girls were eliminated from the Section II tournament as a result of their loss to Fort Edward. The boys were defeated last Saturday by Sharon Springs. It's unfortunate that once the teams that are good enough to qualify for the sectional playoffs enter the tournament, only one will end their season with a victory. The rest of the field, despite their records and accomplishments during the season, will experience a loss in their final game. That ending is especially difficult for seniors.

Both of our teams worked hard to earn a spot in the post season campaign. They were routinely matched against teams representing schools with much larger enrollments. And, just as regularly, they competed against teams that were taller. Nonetheless, they were extremely competitive and earned the ardent support of their followers and the respect of their opponents. I am proud of their performance as athletes and as young men and women representing our school district. Both teams evidenced great sportsmanship. Both teams demonstrated success in the classroom as well.

One of the players on the boys varsity team gave me a birthday card earlier in the season with the following quote - "It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog." That message was characteristic of each of our teams. I believe Heatly has the smallest high school enrollment in Section II, yet I believe that Heatly has the largest amount of desire, determination, and dedication.

In addition, our fans have been extremely supportive. Their encouragement was constant and their cheers echoed through every gymnasium in the league. The long trek to tonight's game (about 50 miles north of Green Island) was a testament to their loyalty. The people who assisted the teams as managers and scorekeepers also deserve our appreciation and respect.

Congratulations to our basketball athletes and coaches on their successful seasons.

Now, if the snow ever melts and clears our fields, we'll be ready for baseball and softball.

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