Reporting crimes in minor sports

In any sport, losing is as indispensable a part of the game as winning and losses are a great way for the youth to learn to deal with them.

We have just completed the minor hockey season as well as the basketball season at schools.

It has been another year of wins and losses, championship banners and unrealized hopes, bringing much happiness as well as a few tears to the eyes of players, coaches and parents out of joy or disappointment.

All in all, we should be happy that the children in our communities are actually able to practice all kinds of sports thanks to the availability of facilities for them and to the commitment and sacrifices of the families in dedicating their time and money for the youth to enjoy their time before they begin to take on bigger responsibilities.

Minor sports are, or should ideally be, aimed at instilling a healthy competitive instinct as well as teaching how to control that competitive urge among the youth who are involved in a wide variety of sports.

That is a platform where the young athletes learn how to take direction from the coaches, how to be part of something bigger than themselves as individuals and how to function as part of that embodiment.

It is an environment for them to learn from their peers, to shape their behaviour and conduct in a group and, to an extent, to smoothen the rough edges in the way they act and interact with others.

Minor sports also allow the youth to collectively take responsibility for their team in both wins and losses.

There is probably no problem with sharing the joy of the wins, but the losses always are problem, and probably more for adults, mainly parents, than the kids involved in the sports themselves.

In any sport, losing is as indispensable a part of the game as winning and losses are a great way for the youth to learn to deal with them.

Several years ago, I was told by a high school coach that he would not report the results of their games to me if his team were to lose.

I was perplexed by that statement because I could not fathom how a high school coach, also a teacher, could have such a narrow vision of high school athletics.

It is understandable that coaches, school administrators, team managers and parents want to take pride in the athletic successes of their students/ children.

But it is one thing to take pride in an achievement, and it is quite another to claim ownership of it. Because when one claims a stake in the success, it naturally leads to a point where a guilty party is sought if the success is replaced by failure.

It is no secret that I just wanted to put my thoughts on this topic on record after I was accused of “false journalism” for misreporting the names of top scorers of the Broncs in the provincial basketball tournament in Lethbridge the weekend before last (a correction is printed in the sports section).

As you might read in the note below the letter to the editor in the next column, we tried to reach the coaching staff to report on the outcome of the tournament but could not receive any feedback and then reported the results from the game sheets and in the process I misquoted the names of the top scorers among the Ponoka boys.

Making mistakes in journalism is like accidentally dropping a glass on the floor and breaking it: You never do it on purpose, but it always happens.

But making a crime out of this is really blowing it out of proportion.

From a personal standpoint, I think it would be much better parenthood for those who have complained to encourage their children whose names were omitted to come forward and ask for themselves for the corrections to be made.

That would be the boys, owners of the achievement, standing up for themselves.