The house was a small 5-room 1,497 square foot apartment. The number of the apartment was 23. Inside the house there was an old African rug that was beaten up and very dirty. The walls were old and the corners dusty. The furniture was rather new, but they all had defects of some sort. The couch had floral designs typical of furniture from the 1980’s.
The Lavid Family was a lower income family with two kids living in downtown Chicago. The mother, Emanie, was a school teacher, but recently lost her job. She had large brown eyes. Her hair was in long blonde curls and her face, well made up with makeup. The father Curtis was a contractor that fixed up people’s houses. He had smaller blue eyes. He was only about 5 foot 6 inches.
Their two kids Rajai and Kavion were both smart and athletic. Despite their size, they both loved to participate in sports. Rajai loved to run track and field, yet Kavion always had a love for basketball.
It was Friday, November 27th at the schools first basketball game of the year. The Skyhawk’s were hosting the Stars at home. The schools primary sport was their football team that was 5-12 the last two years. Their basketball team was just another part of the annoying daily announcements. To the kids who played, it was their favorite part of the week. At 5:03 pm, all the team members were waiting in the gym for Coach Jacobs to open their locker rooms. Unlike the rest of the school, the gym and locker rooms were new because an anonymous donor paid for them to remodel the gym. Inside, there was a new table that all the players can sit around and analyze their game. There was also large lockers with hangars and nice sofas. The kids were anxious for the coach to arrive.
When coach Jacobs got there, he saw that the kids were ready to get warmed up, as they always were, unlike him, they enjoyed their sport.
The coach said, “Boys, we will play, try to get a basket and leave, nothing else, you hear me?”
“Yes coach, but can’t we practice for a bit until the other team arrives?” said Number 15.
“Fine, do whatever but be ready in 45 minutes to play,” said coach Jacobs.
The coach was a man who has always had a social problem. Since he has a speech impediment, people did not want to be around him. When he was 15 his grandpa died in a car accident. He was never the same, and was always a negative person. Even though he had a nice home and a nice car, he always wanted more, even though he was now 56 years old. He thought that the kids made the team lose, yet it was him who benched the best players after every foul they got.
Player number 2 was getting ready when his friend came up to him.
“Lets score more than 20 points today, I don’t want to lose again!” said Ademar who was Number 12 on the basketball team.
“I will try, I don’t get a lot of playing time, so I may not score a lot,” said Kavion.
“Its fine, all you need to do is enjoy yourself and play as good as you can,” said Number 12.
Number 12 was also from a lower income family. The only difference is his grandmother was a neurosurgeon who made a lot of money. She gave money to his mom, so the family lived in a larger home than the Lavid family.
Fifteen minutes later, Number 12 and Kavion were the first ones ready. They decided to start shooting baskets so they will be warmed up. They noticed that some of the normal people are showing up to see the game. They also saw many new fans, who turned out to be from the visiting school. They grabbed their favorite basketball that was third on the rack, and started practice. They always start out with simple passing. Chest, bounce and overhead passes. Then comes the simple layup practices. They then defend each other. Kavion’s favorite part was the three pointers. That was his specialty because he had a good technique. The two high school boys were having a great time. They were happy and forgot about their real situation. They forgot about the relatives who died, the lack of money, the only thing they focused on was having fun. When coach came out he was red in the face. He did not want the kids to be playing a game wasting their energy.
“What do you think you are doing!?”
“Having fun and warming up.”
“NO. NO. No! I did not tell you to play games. I said just warm up! You guys never fail to upset me!” said the coach.
“Wow he is grumpy today, if only he realized what fun was,” said Number 12.
“Yo dude, look over there, here comes the visitors,” said Kavion. “They look like they are ready to win, and by a lot too.”
The visiting team was the Stars from Highland Park. They are one of the best teams in Illinois. They were undefeated the last season. They were not happy that they had to play against a team who won one game the previous year. You can tell they were overconfident because they arrived in a huge coach bus with their school’s name on it. They were bombarded by local writers and even a few people wanted autographs. That would all soon change after that game.
The first quarter was in five minutes. Kavion saw his parents Emanie and Curtis in the audience. They were cheering and he waved and blew a kiss towards them.
The two teams were taking their court side benches. They then saw that their gym which holds about 300 people was full to the brim with Stars fans, and only about 20 Skyhawk’s fans.
When the game started, the Stars fans went crazy, and the coach was yelling orders to his team. All the coach for the Skyhawk’s did was say lets win and that’s it.
Jump ball started with the 6 foot 1 inch player Number 67 Brady Oldeen from Highland Park, and 5 foot 3 inch Devon Jamies from Chicago. Brady was taken by surprise when Devon jumped and pushed the ball towards his team. Number 24 received the ball and passed it to number 12, for the three-point assist. 3-0 Sky. The next points would be on rebounds by the Sky, because the Stars went 0-16 with their shots in the first five minutes. With 4 minutes left in the quarter, they scored their first point making the game 25-3. The coach was going nuts, when the home team’s coach was drinking monster energy and half asleep. That would be his last game and last hours at the school before he was fired. By the end of the quarter the score was 27-15 Sky winning.
Kavion had 6 points and 3 rebounds and 1 assist. He just had the best quarter in his entire two season career. By the next quarter and halftime the game was tied 30-30. It was clutch time. Timeout was called and Kavion was subbed into the game. There was only one minute left in the third quarter. He did not expect what happened next. His team passed him the ball, he began dribbling towards the left side of the three point line. He passed the ball to the center Number 10, who passed it right back to him. He had an open shot, jumped and watched the ball travel through the air. He failed to see the defender lunging toward him. When they made contact he fell to the ground. But the ball made it into the net for a three point field goal. Plus he got fouled and can make a four point play! That was when things began to change after that very play on opening night. For Kavion, his future would be forever different.
Stay tuned for more on my novel that I am writing which is about sports! I hope you have enjoyed this sneak peek at my story. Stay tuned for more.