It’s Bump, and I am back for a final goodbye.
We lost Saturday in New Paltz to Livingston Manor, 69-53. I never knew that something that made me so happy, could, within two hours, make me so empty. It’s hard to come to the realization that it is all over. That for me, there is no “we will get ‘em next year,” or “next game, we will do this better.” My season has ended and so has a chapter in my life. I will be playing baseball in the shared sports program with the Pierson Whalers, so look for me there!
I must thank a few people before I say goodbye to my faithful readers:
Cailin Riley and Nick Thomas from the Southampton Press, for giving me this amazing opportunity to voice my thoughts, opinions and emotions about the amazing game of basketball.
Coach Carl Johnson, thank you for putting up with me for four years. Four long years! You are a patient man with a brilliant mind for basketball. I have learned so much from you and appreciate all your time and effort. This season is the one I will never forget and I must let you know that even though it appeared that I liked to argue with you about every little thing, that I respect you to the fullest. OK, I do like to argue with you, but only because you get tight really quick. LOL, I am proud to tell everyone I meet that I was coached by Carl Johnson, Killer Bee!
To all our fans that supported us along the way, you guys were great! To my parents, your constant support this season has been at times overwhelming, but looking back, you were full of love, hope and desire for me to strive for bigger and better things. Whether I walk off a winner or not, you have always welcomed me with open arms and a smile filled with pride. The strength the two of you provide for me and my sisters is relentless in any circumstance and you have always given us endless support in whatever we chose to do. I can’t thank you enough.
To my teammates…..my brothers. There were only seven of us in the end and we pulled out a Class D Championship! Caanan, I know you will go far in life and I hope your love for the game takes you to all the places you want to go! Zave, we could not have made it through the season without you! Jason, Anajae, Tylik and Josh... Well, we seniors leave you with this; bring home a title next year! You have all the tools and talent, don’t waste them and don’t waste time. I know you have it in you, so do the black and gold proud.
Senior year is full of “lasts”—last game, last performance, last holiday and now my last Diary of a Player. So I will leave you with this final thought. This weekend I heard someone say, “life is not all about sports you know,” and at first I thought she was right, but then on the bus ride home I began to change my mind. Life for me is about sports, it’s the way my mind works, and now I must simply play the game a bit differently. I won’t play basketball in college, this I know, but my dream is to become a sports commentator, so for me, life is sports.
My freshman and sophomore years of high school, I didn’t even make the practice squad, but I was on the team and was a huge supporter. It was not until my junior and senior years did I get to play, but I waited patiently, bided my time and did what I could and needed to do until my opportunity arose. And that is exactly what I plan on doing in life. I will watch, learn, enjoy and involve myself the best I know how. I will listen, take notes and learn from the experts, and when the time is right, I will take the court and play my role just as I have this past year. I may not be the lead scorer, but in my own way, I will be heard, I will be a part, I will make a difference and I will succeed.
So if for some reason the woman who made that comment (no names please) is reading this, life is sports to me. Life is pride, determination, competition, team work and effort. I don’t know about any other seniors, but the road of sports for Brenden Hemby does not end here, as a matter of fact, it just very well may be the beginning.
Play your game and play it well.