Getting better takes work

The school year is winding down and the state track meet and the state golf tournaments are about all there is left for most schools out in the area. 

District golf was this week and state golf is after school is out. Qualifying was still in question for the Plainsmen golf when I wrote this. 

 The Plainsmen boys’ track squad did get some qualifiers this past week at the district meet in Sutherland. 

The Plainsmen district was a tough one and it makes it harder to win events, but it also gives participants a chance to finish with good times due to the competition and still make it to the state meet. The Plainsmen took advantage of that and got some qualifiers by being some of the fastest times in all districts, regardless of where they placed. 

PCS will take five participants in four events to Omaha this week to compete for some medals. In the individual events Evan Sestak qualified in the 110 High Hurdles, Alex Patrick in the 200 Meters, and Caden Waitley in the 800 Meters. One relay qualified, the 4 X 400 relay, with runners Charles Johnson, Evan Sestak, Domonic Wendell and Alex Patrick. 

Congratulations and good luck to the tracksters and to the golf team this week!

The end of school doesn’t necessarily mean the end of activities for the high school athletes. Actually the summer months probably are the ones that will make the most difference in how teams will fare next school year than any other time of the year. 

PCS athletes face a challenge in individual attitudes in regards to what is needed for them to be better in the sports in which they participate and if they will spend the time and effort to make themselves better during this time. Another factor is some of the athletes are going to have a different coach. Football, wrestling, volleyball and girls’ basketball will have new head coaches this coming season. In most cases athletes will encounter some learning curves with how things are being done. 

That is not a bad thing and it is not anything most athletes can’t do. But some find it difficult at times because they are asked to do something different. 

Athletes must understand that in any sport there is more than one way to be successful in regards to technique, etc. Athletes must buy in to the new systems and get the job done. 

Also in the summer there is time for athletes to work on individual skills that will make them a better player in the coming year. Throwing, catching, shooting, dribbling, making yourself stronger and quicker are all things that an individual can work on by themselves during the off season. 

I am sure coaches will have guidelines and suggestions on what athletes can do individually to get better. But it still boils down to having the discipline to do those things on a regular basis and do them with correct technique and if at all possible at game speed. It isn’t always easy to do this. 

I don’t know how many times I quoted a line from “A League of Their Own” where one of Tom Hanks’ players said that it was just too hard to do something and his reply was “It’s supposed to be hard. If it wasn’t hard, everyone would do it. The hard is what makes it great.” 

Doing the hard, difficult things to make yourself better is what separates good players and good teams from the others.

There are some things that won’t happen. You won’t be able to will yourself to grow taller and speed is usually God-given. But you can improve your quickness, jumping ability and your strength.

So do what you can do and come back next fall and be a better athlete than you were when you left this spring.

The Grant Tribune-Sentinel

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