Winding down

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By Gerard Flanagan

Between six sports to cover, college classes and working at my dad’s appliance store, I’ve been kept very, very occupied. There’s never been a lack of things to do.

Despite how hectic things can get sometimes, I’ve had quite a fun time covering Marion County sports over the past few months. In that time, I’ve written about so many games. There have been wins, losses and even a few ties. There have been many athletes making stellar plays and thrilling victories.

As the calendar flips to October, boys soccer, girls soccer and volleyball regular seasons have wound down, and it’s time for the postseason to get under way. District tournament for boys soccer began on Monday, while volleyball and girls soccer began their district tournaments last night.

It goes without saying, but the stakes are much higher in the postseason. A season can end with a loss or go on with a win. A team can highlight its season with a championship or have its season end in disappointment by coming up short.

As postseason draws near for seniors at Marion County and across the state, they realize their high school career is nearing its end. For them, the postseason takes on even more importance. The game they’re playing in could be their final game. They want to keep playing for as long as possible. They want their final season to be their best. When they walk off the field after a loss, that might be the final time they ever get to play.

With all this considered, the postseason can bring out the best a player and team have to offer. It can bring out some fiery competitive spirit. Teams usually face the best competition opponents have to offer. Games can come down to a few crucial plays, even the final play. Each play and each minute take on heightened importance.

As postseason action begins, it is hard to believe another season is almost in the books. Two months of games, accomplishments, twists and turns, highs and lows have all come down to one game at a time. Lose, and there will be no next game. Win, and the season keeps going on. For some teams, seasons will end quickly. Some will make some noise in the postseason and win a few games. A select few teams will earn a trip to the state tournament, and one lucky and talented team will win it all and have the right to call themselves the best in the state of Kentucky.

Many, many postseasons have come and gone. Each has its own stories of thrilling victories, heroic and clutch performances and heart-stopping plays. Each team has its own story of how it got there and how one team rose above the rest to win it all. What story will this postseason tell? What excitement awaits us?

I wish our teams and athletes the best of luck as they compete in the postseason. Let’s bring home some trophies! Let’s keep playing! Go get ’em!