All Around Wise: Shoot for the Cup

By Richard Greene | Published Saturday, March 9, 2019
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Friday afternoon four of us crowded around my messy desk to watch the stats page on my computer as the final seconds of the 4A semifinal played out.

When the clock hit zero, we initially celebrated, as for a brief second, Decatur was highlighted in red, showing they had survived 51-50. Then in an instant the reality appeared that Liberty Hill had completed a comeback and stole the victory 53-51 on a buzzer-beating 3-pointer.

Richard Greene

Collectively our hearts broke, and we pained for the players and fans hundreds of miles away in San Antonio.

The sting will soon fade as fans and players can take stock in what has been a magical season, which included a high-water mark for wins for the program and a first trip to the state tournament.

It also added to what has been a stellar school year for the Decatur athletic program. A quick recap: state titles in boys cross country and volleyball; second-place in girls cross country; final four appearances in football and boys basketball; and a regional quarterfinal in girls basketball.

Decatur ended January in second place in the Lone Star Cup standings in 4A with 44 points – two back of Canyon. Argyle, which won the state title in girls basketball, lurked six points back of Decatur.

The Lone Star Cup is awarded annually to six high schools, one in each of the six UIL classifications, based on their team performance in district and state championships. Along with team sports, schools also earn points for UIL academics, robotics, cheerleading, one-act play, marching band, Congress, mariachi and film.

Argyle has won the 4A Lone Star Cup the past seven years.

Decatur’s new goal should be to take the Cup, not just this year but annually. It’s not only a pride point for the school, but also the community, to say you’re not the best at one thing, but everything.

I witnessed this in Lindsay with the positive peer pressure in 2007 after the school captured its first Class A Cup the previous year. The UIL director and athletic director traded fun quips about holding up their end of the bargain to keep the trophy in the tight-knit community. Lindsay won six of seven Lone Star Cups between 2006 and 2012.

But winning the Cup doesn’t just take brawn on the field or court. It takes brain power and resources in the classroom for UIL academics and fine arts. That’s where the focus needs to turn.

Richard Greene is the Messenger editor.

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