Thank You, Brentwood Basketball

Thursday, February 14, 2019 - By: Zjaya D, Allard ‘19; Photo By Jim Ganley

Five years ago, I stood, as a wide-eyed and nervous Grade 8 student, at center court of the Woodward Sportsplex, wearing a Brentwood basketball jersey for the first time in my life, ready to play the first game of my Brentwood career. I had spent the last three years watching my older sister do some incredible things in her Brentwood jersey, and I was eager to try and follow in her footsteps. Since that day, I have had the opportunity to slip on my #6 jersey more times than I can count, each time with the same amount of pride and excitement I felt that first game.

I’ve always done my best to not take each game for granted, because I knew that one day, I’d be putting on my jersey for the last time. Five years ago, it was hard to believe that day would ever come, where I would be pulling #6 over my head for the last time. This season, the reality of that set in, and I have finally reached the end of my Brentwood basketball career. I’ve been extremely lucky this season to have an action-packed season, especially recently, where we’ve had 4 tournaments and some league games, all leading up to playoffs.

The week we returned from Winter Break, the Senior Girls Basketball team travelled to Port Coquitlam for a three-day tournament where we were competing against some of the top teams in the province. The team demonstrated incredible tenacity, and proved that that we were able to compete with some of the top teams, with very close scores through each game. In addition to this tournament, our January and February were filled with a 2 league games against our biggest rivals, Shawnigan Lake School, our own Brentwood Winter Shootout tournament, the Shawnian 2019 Senior Girls’ Basketball Tournament, and of course, South Island playoffs.

I’ve been lucky enough to play in four Senior Girls’ Basketball Showcase games at Brentwood, but none will to compare to my last one. The entire Brentwood community offered their incredible support, and cheered louder than I have ever heard, until the final buzzer went off. I am so grateful for all of the effort that went into making the game experience incredible, from the hard work of the SAC, the behind the scenes work from facilities and Brentwood Broadcast, and of course, every member of the Brentwood family that came to support. I could not have asked for a better final home game: it truly was an experience I will never forget.

This past weekend, our season sadly came to an end at South Island Playoffs. Unfortunately, facing injuries and illnesses, our team was not at full strength heading into the tournament. Despite being low in numbers, the team was not low in determination or tenacity. I have been lucky to play alongside an amazing group of athletes this season, and we have made both memories, and friendships, that I know will last forever. 

Brentwood basketball has been a very large part of my life for the past five years, and it has been a program where I truly feel I belong. It hasn’t been just about the workouts and the practices and the games. It’s been about playing a pick-up game of three on three with your friends on Sunday afternoons; it’s been about playing hide and seek on the ferry on our way to a tournament; it’s been about the late night team dinners after an evening game; it’s been about road trip karaoke on those long bus rides; it’s been about being with your second family, with people who will stand by your side both on the court and off.

I’ve learned so many important lessons through Brentwood’s basketball program and it’s hard to believe I won’t be pulling my jersey over my head one last time. It’s not easy to find the right words to express how grateful I am for the opportunities, support, and experiences I have been given through this program. Thank you, Brentwood Basketball, for all you have given me.

Zjaya D, Allard ‘19

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