22 March 2010

Allow me to begin my first blogging experience by apologizing to my wife for our disparate post totals: Meghan-43, Ryan-0. I appreciate all the time and effort she puts into documenting our experiences for friends and family, and I sometimes even find myself justifying not keeping a journal because I know she will write a good post about most big events.

I had the opportunity a few weeks ago to fly home to see my little brother, Coleman in his state basketball tournament. Fortunately, my spring break lined up with the tournament perfectly, so I didn't even have to miss class to go. (I realize that normal people jump at any legitimate reason to get out of school, but I am still in the "overwhelmed and utterly confused" stage of my law school experience, so missing a day or two of class is a horrifying prospect to me.) Despite how hard I tried to convince Meghan that she should take a few days off at the end of the week, she only has two personal days a year and is forced to ration them carefully.

Coleman and the Enumclaw Hornets entered the tournament with an undefeated 24-0 record, fresh off a district championship. The team is extremely talented and was ranked first in the state for most of the season, featuring a balanced scoring attack with all five senior starters averaging between nine and thirteen points per game.

Enumclaw beat Meadowdale in Game 1 by six, setting up a second-round matchup against Bellevue. Game 2 was a rematch of an earlier meeting of the two top-ranked teams in the Martin Luther King Holiday Hoopfest. In the first meeting, the Hornets rode a dominating performance by none other than Coleman Clyde and ended up winning by six. Coleman hit five of seven threes and ended with twenty-one points in the win. (For article on the game, see http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/highschoolsports/2010829376_mason19.html). Coleman turned in another solid performance in the rematch against Bellevue, finishing with twelve points on five of six shooting as the Hornets advanced after a 66-63 win. Enumclaw handled Shadle Park in the semifinals, advancing to the state championship game. My little brother had another noteworthy performance, with nine points shooting better than 57% from the field.

The Hornets faced the Union Titans in the championship game on Saturday night. Enumclaw had the better record. Enumclaw had the better players. Enumclaw was the better team. Unfortunately, the better team lost that night. The first half was tight, with the Hornets leading by only one point at halftime. Coleman hit back-to-back three pointers to open the second half, sparking a run that put the team up by nine at the end of the third quarter. The Titans fought back and put themselves into a position where they could take the lead on free-throws with eight seconds remaining. Enumclaw just couldn't answer and their perfect season ended imperfectly, in a one-point loss in the championship game.

Despite the devastating end to a historic season, the 2009-2010 Enumclaw basketball team finished better than any other Enumclaw team has before - 2nd place - claiming the right to be called the best Enumclaw team ever. That is definitely saying something, considering the long tradition of this quality program. I'm extremely proud of my brother and was happy to be able to see him play, and play so well.

Now we are relying on a Duke championship to provide some consolation. There aren't many things better than seeing nay-sayer after nay-sayer quieted as Duke has steadily advanced to the Final Four, and I would love nothing more than to see Coach K win his fourth national championship. Coleman actually flew out to Virginia last month to go with me to see Duke slaughter UVA in Charlottesville. Two more wins and it will be a happy year. Go Duke!

03 March 2010

For Jena

Dear Jena,

I was looking through my pictures I found this one that I took some time ago while walking around the Tidal Basin at sunset. Beautiful huh? Anyway, I immediately thought of you.

So...this is for you. I like to think this bird - shall we call him Florence? (not really a boy name, I know, but it fits) - is posing because he knew he was getting his picture taken.

Silly bird. Takes me back to our days in Provo!

Miss you.