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  • Thuptim Appleton

Making Ends Meet at Semi Finals- EABH v. British Urca Boys’ Basketball

The atmosphere was already tense. The referees were the same as the previous game's and the basketball coach was already noticeably on edge; however, none of this was going to deter the Hawks. The opposing team for tonight was The British School of Rio de Janeiro Urca, who made a basket almost immediately. Luckily, Pedro Jorge (7) returned the favor right after (2x3). There were other noteworthy baskets such as Eduardo Calixto’s free throw and the joint effort between PJ, Aidan Van Cleef (8) and Tiago Loures (5) to score points, but Pedro continued to particularly shine for the team. He was truly the MVP of tonight. The first quarter concluded with EABH in a steady position of 13x9.

Edward Mason (2), nicknamed Ted, opened and closed the second quarter beautifully. His footwork was truly impressive and complemented Pedro and Calixto’s unstoppable free-throws and two-pointers (25x16). Ted finished the quarter with a three-pointer in the last .5 seconds of the match, causing the crowd to chant his name over and over again (28x19). Spirits of both the players and audience were incredibly high. Nothing was going to stop the Hawks.

Similar to the last quarter, Ted scored immediately and the Hawk’s defense was stupendous as well. The Falcons were getting too aggressive and fouling left and right, pushing Calixto over while their audience cheered on the violence. The Hawks were the definition of teamwork when Tiago, Ted, Aidan, and Calixto collaborated to gain points for their team (34x26). Victory was so close you could taste it -- but then something happened: the Falcons caught up. By the end of the quarter, the placard read 36x33, unfortunately. But the Hawks weren’t ready to give up just yet.

EABH audience cheered endlessly for the athletes and the team was giving their all in return. Tiago even passed the ball while lying on the floor. Calixto was fouled against so hard that he jumped similarly to a dolphin when one of the Falcon's pushed him. Ted was able to get a three-pointer but, sadly, the opposing team did the exact same thing a second later (39x37). Additionally, Pedro got a free-throw in but, unfortunately, the opposing team was able to get, not only a three-pointer, but two two-pointers as well (40x44).

The coaches of both teams were angry and EABH’s coach started arguing with the referee, which would be for the worse in the long run. The other EABH chaperones were trying to quiet the coach down by calling out his name, but he simply would not listen. The Falcons kept getting progressively more aggressive and, despite the Hawks being given free throw opportunities, they could not make any due to the overbearing environment caused by the opposing audience. In addition to the disturbance, the referee forgot to stop the time during a free throw, causing EABH to lose valuable time for nothing. The other team’s aggression was so bad that Pedro Jorge, who was EABH’s strongest member of the game, got injured. The benched players greeted and comforted him while he was crying. The Hawks attempted to make more points but it was almost as if the referees were specifically against them, which added stress to the players on top of their coach’s anger.

A three-pointer made by Eduardo Calixto was very close to entering but, at the last second, went out of the hoop. It was at this moment that they knew the Hawks had lost the game. As the match concluded, all members of the team and audience alike were on the verge of tears. EABH truly gave their all for this game and deserved so much more. The audience met and comforted the athletes and questioned the choices of both the coaches, referees, and opposing team alike. While the Hawks may have lost the semi-final, they are determined to bring back bronze at the very least. All members of the Hawks should be applauded tonight but especially Pedro Jorge, who truly was amazing.

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