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My Sunday with a bunch of basket cases

April 19, 2005|by BOB PARASILITI

It was a normal sports Sunday.

Yet, it was like no sports Sunday I ever experienced before.

It had all the signs of a great spring day.

Bright sunshine ... great action ... fantastic finishes ... everything needed to keep one's interest.

All the components were there.

Like most good games, there were some balls involved. In fact, there was a lot of them, like 6 1/4 dozen.

Kids were playing the games.

So were adults.

And no one was complaining or grousing - at least outwardly - that someone was cheating or playing favorites.

Tension built with every popup.

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The players began to feel more stress and emotion with every passing second - but no one took a swing at anyone a la Gary Sheffield.

Still, winners squealed with delight while losers groaned and grumbled at their luck.

The arena was a mixed bag of sports.

Players were shooting for baskets.

Every ball used had its share of hits.

And every ball used had more than its fair share of misses.

Everyone was looking for a score on every play.

There were plenty of numbers and odds, and each went against the vast majority.

Many players were playing doubles and triples.

There was a lot of commentary and Sunday afternoon quarterbacking going on with every play.

The Nextel race was screening in the background.

Concessionaires were making their way up and down the aisles selling their wares to the hungry fans.

My stepdaughter Brianna, watched each ball carefully and jotted all the results on her scorecard, which was a first for her.

My wife, JoAnn, and a number of friends all got their competitive juices flowing, hoping to let out that winning yell. (For the record, it stayed very quiet in our section.)

In many cases, players wished for the games to last longer than they were, just so they had a chance to go home a winner.

When it was all over and Sunday's doubleheader times 14 - 28 games in all - was complete, the results were simple.

There weren't any scores to report. Nor where there standings to compile.

And, like always, when it came down to it, there was only one winner at the end of Sunday afternoon's competition at the Clear Spring Fire Hall.

It was all the student-athletes of Clear Spring.

They were the true winners in my first-ever experience with Basket Bingo, the event sponsored by the Clear Spring Boosters Club.

The proceeds will allow Clear Spring athletes a chance to play another day, with some better equipment and facilities to help enhance their talents.

That makes all the thrills of victory and the agony of defeats that go with 28 games of following the bouncing balls worth it.

Meanwhile, I also found out a couple of things.

For example, take heart, men. There is actually a ball game that makes women go crazy, especially if there are prize baskets on the line.

As a sports writer, I see winners and losers every day. Those fortunes create the people who and incidents that make or break the stories I write. The bottom line is always competition and good clean fun.

On Sunday afternoon, I experienced both, but I still want the chance to get the last word.

"BINGO."

That was the one thing I never got the chance the say during this worthy benefit on a normal sports Sunday that was like no sports Sunday I have ever experienced before.

Bob Parasiliti is a staff writer for The Morning Herald. His column appears every other Tuesday. He can be reached at 301-733-5131, ext. 2310, or by e-mail at bobp@herald-mail.com

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