Today we headed out under dreary skies with the threat of more rain for the last game of the season. The boys all like this weather because they don't overheat. The parents aren't so fond of the chill, but it does make for nice photos. I only got 208 pictures today. Did I mention that we bought a Nikon D40? We bought it over the summer, but the real reason was for taking lacrosse pictures. We also got the 55-200mm lens with vibration reduction. Fabulous camera and spectacular lens! I was able to take decent action pictures of every boy on the team. Some are much more than decent. I am rather proud of my picture taking capability. When I have more time (Sunday or Monday), I'll pull out more of the exciting pictures.
The boys weren't nervous, but the parents were. This was it, the last game, and the opposing team was the best in the league. They came into the game undefeated and left, well, I won't keep you in suspense. Our mostly 5th grade team did not pull out an upset on this 6th grade team. However, the Tigers did not go scoreless. They made 3 goals and only allowed 10. They also played a spectacular game. No matter how hard the hits or how tough the opponents, the Tigers stayed with it. We were really, really proud of the boys!
After the game, we went over to congratulate the boys and the coaches were already doing it. One of their coaches only sees the boys at practice so this was his first time at a game with them. He reinforced the message that they had gone up against a very tough team and never once gave up. Just as he finished and the boys were getting ready to head out, the head coach raced over saying, "Don't leave!" We were quite puzzled. The boys were under the impression that they had to stay within five points to have a chance at the playoffs. The head coach reassured us that the League Commissioner was on site and he was "crunching the numbers." The suspense was terrible! We waited, we waited some more. What could be happening? At the beginning of the game, we were all certain that our season was over because the top four teams were all 6th grade teams. Or were they?
After more tense minutes than anyone wanted to wait, the Commissioner started walking our way. Then he stopped halfway between us and another group of parents. The agony! No one dared rush him as he was deep in thought and flipping through his papers. Finally, he came over and we gathered together the boys and the parents. First, he apologized for not keeping on top of our team's scores throughout the season. He didn't state why that happened, perhaps no one expected our supposedly lower-division team to play so well in the upper division. Whatever the reason, when he presented our record to the parents of the team who had been in the #4 spot, all had to agree that our Tigers had the better record for the season. Yes, the Tigers are in the playoffs!
This was completely unexpected, but it just fits with this season. We have a team of very tough, very competitive boys. It has been a privilege to watch them play this season. No matter what happens in the playoffs, these boys are winners! The first playoff game is tonight at 8:45 p.m. Yes, you read that right. It really is a wild season. Tomorrow is the team party and, oh, the stories they can share! Now I'm off to finish printing posters for the boys and burning CDs of pictures for the parents. Then it will be time to bundle up and head off to the field again!