Pressure? That’s Nothing

Ali - Fayetteville, New York
Entered on December 14, 2008
Age Group: Under 18

Just seconds left. Your heart racing. The faces of your friends and family cover the stands as everyone waits in awe. There is nothing like this pressure. This tension and will to perform under the most upsetting situations. This is what drives a person and allows them to be who they are, because pressure truly defines a person.

For me, pressure is an everyday thing. Am I going to get my homework done in time for class, will I be on time to class, do I have all my books, did I put in enough effort, can we win this game? Being able to deal with these pressures and overcome and succeed is something that truly makes and defines a person. If they can react fast to the situation and handle it well, then that is what makes them strong. If they don’t step up to the plate, and aren’t the “Go to” person, then maybe they are less strong and not as confident.

Stepping up, having the determination and zeal to win, fighting with everything you have has always been important in my mind. Basketball comes naturally to me, and I have always wanted to be the best and lead my team to success.

Ridgefield was our biggest rival, and being twelve years old, that rivalry would continue for many years to come. They were the team to beat, and we were down by only a few. It was the first game of the season that I had started, and I wasn’t going to let anything stop me. I had worked so hard and I wasn’t about to crack under pressure. The game was slipping away as the last seconds ticked off the clock. We were down by one as I rushed the offense; we needed to score. I set up on the right side, “Eight”, cleared the second guard through, “Seven”, and drove straight to the basket, “Foul.” I was on the free throw line, five seconds left, two shots, and I needed to make them both to win. My legs were weary; chills shot down my back; I knew I could do this I was strong and confident. We weren’t going to overtime, we were going to win. I lined up, spun the ball and shot, tie game. Then the real test, it went silent; I spun the ball, dribbled it three times, and then shot. A steady gasp emerged from the fans, as the ball then swished through the hoop! We were up by one as the last five seconds ticked down. Finally the last whistle, we won!

I had won the game with my free throws and my heart. Handling pressure has defined me as a person, and will for everyone.