the one where we know who really won... Lady Pirates play Shallowater

They say a picture is worth a 1000 words.

Look how happy they are? Completely happy! They are so excited they won!

Shallowater beat Cooper Friday night.

Both teams are excellent teams and feature kick butt players. Summer Zoe plays with many of the Shallowater girls in a summer league as do several Lady Pirates. That's why it's so hard when these two play each other.

But we weren't beaten by the girls. We were beaten by a referee. I wonder how he's been sleeping these past few nights?

Here's what happened.

There were just a few seconds left in the game and the Lady Pirates were down by 2. It had been a hard fought game and a close one. Summer Zoe was throwing in the ball. She passed it to Haley who drove down to the 3 point line. Claire set the screen. The Shallowater defender completely ran into Clair and fell down. Haley shot and I heard SWISH and a WHISTLE AT THE SAME TIME.

Oh, Lord!

The ref made the motion with his arms for a moving screen and waved off the basket. YES. You read that right. Haley swished the 3 and we won the game.

Except we didn't. He waved it off and called a foul on Claire.

Fans go ballistic! The place went ballistic! Coach went ballistic! The same ref called a T on Coach and their girl shot and missed 2 FT's. Shallowater wins the game by 2.

It's OVER.

I've spoken with referees before. HELLO! I'm court-side and we make small talk during time outs and in between quarters. I don't know them by name, but we recognize each other and chit chat all the time. Here's what I've learned from refs during those moments during the game.

They make many callsin the first quarter to let the girls know the pace of the game. To set the tone sort of speak. How closely they will call bumps and how tight they willallow the defense to play. If they will allow the guards to touch or hands off during a game. It helps the girls measure their play. To know what they can and can't do.

Now Friday night I witnessed a couple of moving screens in the game, ON BOTH SIDES. FROM BOTH TEAMS. Never once, did they call a moving screen foul in the game. Not once. For a ref to blow the whistle at that pointin the game, and basically decide the fate of a CHAMPIONSHIP game, well, it's inexcusable. It's awful. Just plain awful.

I just sat on the floor in shock. Not really knowing what to do. So, I did what I always do and photographed the story. I'm a storyteller. This is the ONE image, the above one, that stuck out. I had to post it.

But it makes me feel a bit ill inside. It should be Lady Pirates in that picture.

I felt horrible for our parents.

For our fans.

For our Coach.

The ref was seen eating at a local establishment later that night and a Cooper fan went up to him and exchanged words. He expressed regret for having blown the whistle and agreed he should not have been the decision maker in that ballgame with 7 seconds left.

The team watched film. The view shows the court from above. Claire was planted during her screen. The Shallowater girl never saw Claire and indeed bumped into her and fell to the ground. She had fallen to the ground several times in this game.

In the end, it doesn't matter. It's in the past and we go from here. We have another game to play Tuesday. Another game to win.

In the end, it's OVER. The game ALWAYS ends.

Next time, it will be our uniforms and faces in that picture.

Next time, it's US!!!!

Go Lady Pirates!!!