Making the Shot

Updated on June 23, 2018
Amber Byerly profile image

Amber is a wife and mom finishing up her degree in Marriage and Family Psychology. Her passion is helping others live free and victorious!

Making the Shot

It was my seventh-grade year in middle school and on the outside of the gymnasium hung a paper to sign up for basketball tryouts. I loved basketball games! The nachos, the cheers, and chants from the stands...D-fense!...D-fense!, the squeaky sound the basketball shoes made on the glossy wood floors, and did I mention the nachos? As a grown adult I stand a petite five feet and one inch tall, but I did not give much thought to my tiny frame as I wrote my name on the vacant black line. The next week as I walked into tryouts I quickly noticed I was the smallest of the group. My heart sunk much lower than my stout body stood. Remembering my mom's words, "Amber, you were born with fire in your veins!" I decided to muster up all the fire I could and play as if my life depended on it. I barely made any shots and struggled to dribble the ball and walk at the same time, but I could guard like a pit bull protecting his bone!

Across the intercom, the announcement was made that teams were posted, and the cheerful voice wished everyone "good luck!". I quickly, but with hesitated hope made my way to the blue and gold painted concrete block wall where my fate hung. Finding the roster for my grade, I slowly ran my finger down the list of names. Gasping loudly, leaving little oxygen for anyone else in the room, eyes bulging in disbelief, and blinking quickly to make sure I was seeing correctly, there was my name in bold, black letters, "AMBER OSBORN, Position: Right Guard".

I have never worn anything as proudly as that royal blue shirt lettered in bright white with our team name the "EAGLES" along with my number, twenty-one. The bright red shorts, red, white and blue knee socks, and red and white high-top basketball shoes that made the same squeaky noise on the court I had admired from the sidelines completed the ensemble. I played with all my might keeping opponents as far from the basket as possible, while desperately wanting my own go at a shot. Given my height and skill in that area, my chances were slim. Then it happened. I was fouled. The whistle blew and I was quickly placed behind the free throw line to take my shots.

The entire gymnasium got quiet, all eyes were on me. It felt as if everyone watching knew how badly I wanted to watch the ball leave my hands and enter the basket scoring a point for my team. The crowd whispered as I dribbled the ball preparing for my first shot. Quickly glancing over at my mother as she sat on the edge of the bleacher, hands clasped in front of her mouth I brought the ball up and followed through as best I could. It bounced off the rim and onto the floor. The sighs from the stands seemed to harmonize perfectly with each hollow bounce of the basketball as if it was laughing at me on its way back for the second shot. Terrified to eye the crowd I grabbed the ball and focused intently on the basket in front of me. Bringing the ball up a second time, I closed eyes as it left my fingertips. The gym erupted in shouts and applause! I opened my eyes and not being able to hold it back, began to cry tears of joy. I did not win the game, I was never the star of the team, I never played another year after that, but I made the shot.

My year on the Eagles basketball team was not life-changing because I went on to be an all-star. It was life-changing because even today I still think about it and it encourages me to face challenges and try things I would not normally try. My kids love it when I tell this story and it has the same effect on them. That's how my son made a select soccer team. Even if you fail, you still tried! Get back up, dust yourself off and keep going! Don't ever let anything hold you back from chasing your dreams and always take the shot!

Tell Me Your Story!

Do you have a cool underdog story that has impacted you? If so, tell me about it in the comments!

Questions & Answers

    © 2018 Amber Byerly


      0 of 8192 characters used
      Post Comment

      No comments yet.


      This website uses cookies

      As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

      For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

      Show Details
      HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
      LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
      Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
      AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
      HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
      Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
      CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
      Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
      Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
      PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
      MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
      Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
      Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
      Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
      Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
      Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
      ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
      Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)