At Keystone, we proudly cheer for our student-athletes
“Be confident in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire. Sure, you’ll encounter challenges here and there, but use them as motivation to try even more. Find ways around and/or through your obstacles.”
– Tamika Catchings, retired basketball player
Attending nine basketball games in three days last week reaffirmed why we offer athletics for children starting in Lower School and going all the way through senior year of high school. While probably nobody would define Keystone as a “jock school,” our Cobras show that they can compete in a variety of sports just as well as they deliver inspiring presentations in class.
It may feel old-fashioned in today’s world, but we take to heart the phrase “student athletes:” children and young adults who attend Keystone are scholars first who also engage in athletic competitions rather than the other way around. Cobras of all ages compete with heart and pride, they learn the invaluable lessons that come from being part of a team, and they sometimes win league and state championships.
The three days of games began last Thursday with our Middle School girls and boys teams. The 7th grade girls overwhelmed their opponents from KIPP Camino, while the 8th grade girls overcame the absence of teammates and their coach due to illness and won in a thrilling game against Castle Hills Christian. The Middle School boys ended a tough season with a loss to Castle Hills, but played hard and can take lessons to build on for next year.
Just last night, the 7th grade girls finished their undefeated season on a high note by winning the League Championship against St. Mary’s Hall. Alas, the 8th grade girls’ finished playing earlier this week in a loss versus Castle Hills.
Last Friday night, the Junior Varsity boys, Varsity Girls, and Varsity Boys also competed against district opponents from Castle Hills. In front of a loud crowd, the Cobras on each team competed with integrity and dignity. While our three teams came up short, the games were enjoyable and the varsity boys game was thrilling until the very end with many lead changes and tense moments. We saw a scary moment when a Castle Hills player dislocated his patella, and we hope he recovers quickly.
This past Saturday morning, teams in grades 3-6 played all around San Antonio. The 6th grade boys team suffered from many players out due to illness and lost to a team from St. George in the semifinals of the postseason tournament. However, they had an excellent season and should feel good about their accomplishments.
Lower School students commenced their competitive seasons with some victories and defeats. They will continue competing for the next few weeks, and I definitely recommend catching them in action if you can. They’re fun to watch.
More important, though, than the wins and losses are the lessons the students gain in life skills and mindsets. With excellent coaching, these young Cobras learn how to play as part of a team, the importance of coming to practice and drilling in the fundamentals of the game, and going hard until the final whistle. Whether they have played for a while or are just discovering the game, students find out how much fun competition can be. They also, of course, appreciate the post-game snack.
Another benefit stems from the community building in the stands. As parents, siblings, relatives, teachers, and administrators gather to cheer on our teams, they have an opportunity to visit with each other and get to know one another better. The coming together of parents for these sporting events may, in fact, be one of the most beneficial elements of these games.
As basketball season winds down, we can take great pride in our students’ growth and development as players and people. We also want to thank their coaches for the wonderful ways they teach, support, and encourage their players. Regular practice and a full schedule of games helps the student athletes improve their skills, as they celebrate victories, bounce back from losses, have fun, and compete with sportsmanship. We hope our athletic program adds to the Keystone experience and allows young people to create memories long after they leave our gym. Go Cobras!