By SCOTT MCKIE B.P.
ONE FEATHER STAFF
As sports fan, we always want our team to win. But, many times the most memorable moments in sports are in games where our team didn’t get that “W”.
Basketball great Larry Bird once said, “Push yourself again and again. Don’t give an inch until the final buzzer sounds.”
It’s that spirit of determination and that “never quit” attitude that gives us memorable comebacks and performances even though the team might not chalk one up in the win column that day.
Cherokee High School has some outstanding athletes, and although the teams might not win every game, fans of the Braves and Lady Braves are almost always treated to great effort and memorable moments.
It’s those efforts that people remember long after everyone has forgotten the score – no matter if it was a win or a loss.
With the Lady Braves soccer team down 7-0 this past Friday night, I was witness to something I never thought I’d see in high school soccer. Cherokee’s Sidnie Yanez literally bended the ball into the net on a corner kick. It just sailed into the net after bending like a curveball…incredible!
The Braves varsity football team had a challenging season this past year, but that surely didn’t stop the players from giving us some memorable moments. Who could forget Brandon Buchanan’s up-the-gut touchdown run at Tuscola? I think he broke five tackles on that play.
And, was there a dry eye in the house when Peri Wildcatt, a Lady Braves senior fresh off a very serious knee injury and still wearing a brace, entered the game at Swain this past season and scored a basket with less than a minute left?
These types of moments happen in a second, and they are gone. But, are they really? I can’t remember the score off the top of my head for many of these games, but I surely remember these plays. One of the best ones I can remember from this past basketball season wasn’t a game-winning, buzzer-beater, but it was most definitely awesome.
Dustin Johnson, Braves senior point guard, brought the ball up the court on a fast-break against the Community School of Davidson in the second round of the state playoffs. His teammate and fellow senior, J.J. Benjamin, followed him and together they split the Davidson defense and Johnson passed the ball behind his back and up to a jumping Benjamin who went for the finger-roll layup. Cherokee was down at the time, and this spurred a run that helped the Braves win the game.
Olympic champion Mary Lou Retton summed up this spirit best when she said, “A trophy carries dust. Memories last forever.”
Sporting must-sees for May 8-10
The NCAA College Lacrosse tournament starts this weekend. Check out first round action on ESPNU on Saturday, May 9 at 12pm. The next day, check out some great soccer action as Chelsea takes on Liverpool in the Barclay’s Premier League on NBCSP at 11am.