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Athletic Anecdote: NAA Seniors

By Denebola
Published: March 2008

By Jarrod Milshtein

Participating in NAA Seniors is a great aspect of any teenage male’s life if they are from Newton. I was extremely disappointed the day that I did not make the freshman basketball team back in the winter of 2005. It may have had something to do with the fact that I never tried out, but nonetheless it was a disappointment.
It all goes back to a middle school gym class where we were playing basketball, and Willie Lyons was on the opposing team. I, the 5’4 small forward, straight out of Temple Beth Avodah, was on a fast break. I went up for the shot, and as expected, Willie stuffed me worse than a Thanksgiving turkey. I had never been so embarrassed. This was the moment I realized I was not Newton South Basketball material.
NAA Seniors offered me a new opportunity in the world of basketball because, what’s a kid to do when he graduates from the regular NAA? The league has been the perfect solution, and it is a great place to play. It doesn’t really matter if I drop the goose egg one game because it is likely that someone else on my team did the same. Situations like this make me feel better about my own abilities, and I tend to forget about the time I didn’t make the South team. I also feel better because no one else in the league plays South basketball. NAA has really helped me through my emotional struggles.
My team this year, the purple team, has been performing wonderfully. We are an outstanding 1-5, but it isn’t the score that matters because I can never read the scoreboard anyway. I think I want to donate a new scoreboard since the league has given me so much. There was one game when my team thought we were winning by one with 23 seconds left in the fourth quarter, when in fact, we were losing by one. When we ended up losing the game, it was somewhat frustrating, but not a big deal. I just told the other team that it was a good game, and that they won fair and square.
It is important to have good sportsmanship in NAA, and almost everyone does. I have never seen anybody swear, yell, or question the referees in any way. The exception was this one time when a player fouled someone on the other team and looked at the referee waiting for the call, which never came. The kid then looked away as if nothing happened. He should have been honest and admitted to fouling the other kid. It was disgraceful.
I am really looking forward to the playoffs because who doesn’t want to win the NAA Seniors championship? It is the most important part of my life right now.
I practice every day for two hours when I get home from school, going through a routine of lay-ups, free throws, and dribbling drills. Then I go to the JCC and lift. I recently went up in weight to about 85 pounds. I am in the best shape of my life, just in time for the playoffs.
Although I am optimistic about our team’s abilities, I am realistic. We will probably fall to the green team again; we lost by 40 points the last time we played. It really was a close game, but they were ultimately the more deserving team. I really want to a have a championship under my belt by the time I graduate from South so that I can play in other intramural leagues later in life.
I can’t express what the league means to me in words, but what you have just read is as close as I can get. I want to encourage everybody to play NAA Seniors next year, even Phil Cimino, so that we can all enjoy the game.

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