With about 30 seconds left in the game, I realized the game had gotten away from us. I turned to the bench and reminded them that “You win well. You lose well. Handle it.”
Through all of the pain, hurt, and tears, we waited until the other team finished celebrating, and then we shook their hands and prayed with them. Seems like an easy thing to do, but it takes more willpower and integrity than you think. At that moment, my team did a great job handling defeat.
As I sat and watched the other team celebrate, I held my 6-year-old as he sobbed into my shoulder. He was set on us winning so he could get a chance to cut down the nets (as he saw the winners of the women’s tournament do prior to our game). A couple of my guys stayed on the bench and watched; some cried, some stared blankly. Some endings are harder than others.