Region Champions

Ahhh!  Basketball playoffs!  They are the best!  Tuesday we got to watch the Chamberlain Cubs pull off an exciting upset win over the Eagle Butte Braves to take home the Regional Championship.  St. Joseph’s took a fan bus to Pierre, South Dakota to support the Cubs, and several staff and homes caravanned along as well.

Everyone seems to like something different about going to a basketball game.  Some of our kids just like to hang out and socialize with friends.  They don’t even seem to know that a game is going on.  As long as they get their giant dill pickle and blue Powerade from the concession stand, they are set.

Some of our kids (and staff/parents) watch the game but still don’t know what is going on.  They like to make helpful suggestions like, “Put in [insert kid’s name]!!”  Or, if the kid is already in the game, “Go!  Score! Win!”

It doesn’t really matter that he is playing defense, after all.

In every crowd there are people who actually know what is going on.  They know the difference between a block and a charge.  They know a steal from a foul and whether that pivot foot travelled.  They keep stats and holler out useful suggestions,

“Watch your follow through!  Keep your head up!”

Of course, sometimes there is a debate as to whether the people “in the know” are the ones in the stands, or the men in the stripes out on the floor.   This is a good time to go to the concession stand.

I personally like to join the cheerleaders.  I have three in my home.  Most days I see them wandering the halls, swinging their arms and muttering cryptic phrases like “Eat ‘em up Cubs.”  Or beat ‘em up?  Team ‘em up?

You would think I would have figured out the cheers by now … but no.  The Cub Mascot is also a St. Joseph’s student, and his houseparent shares my confusion.  For now, we have decided that the words to the fight song are simply “Na na na na nanana,” at high volume.

Chamberlain Cubs team pictures.
Who doesn't love basketball? Congratulations!

The best part of this game?   Several of our St. Joseph’s students are from Eagle Butte, so visiting with friends and family was wonderful.  Somebody got to play with an adorable baby niece with big pink cheeks.  Sigh.

Oh, and watching our 6 foot senior go up and get his Regional medal.

And our junior forward, injured in a game last week, getting carried out on his teammate’s shoulders so he could cut down the game net.  Priceless.

Did I mention that we won?  And that we’re going to state?

What’s your favorite part about high school basketball?  

Student projects doing great

A couple interesting student projects of note. The William Home (4th-5th grade girls) has set a goal this quarter of 10,000 cumulative laps around the gym. Several mornings each week the home gets up early and goes out for a walk and exercise. They are keeping a thermometer on the door to the fitness room and coloring in their progress as they reach each new level. They’ve already passed the 3500 mark!

Gina’s computer class is spending a few minutes each day at the website Free Rice where fun quizzes increase their knowledge, make learning fun and educate them about hunger issue throughout the world. The students were talking about the activity even on the playground, so I knew it was a big hit.

Today was my day to run errands in town, to the bank and county building. While out, I stopped in to check on our folks downtown at our Thrift Store. With February around the corner, they’re redecorating with lots of red clothing for Valentine’s Day. The store is a great service to the community, and a good after school job opportunity for a few of our Lakota students.

St. Joseph's Indian School's cheeleaders.
These girls did a great job cheering on the basketball teams!

I ended the day in the gym, where our 6th-8th grade teams were in action. Besides the players, I cheer for our cheerleaders and encourage them to keep on improving. They had the help of our younger students, the 1st-3rd graders, who make up the pep club. This year they all have matching shirts that are St. Joseph’s basketball-style jerseys. They sure get both enthusiastic and loud when they start cheering. Half way through the games however, the time came for them to leave for supper, homework and bedtime. The gym quieted down considerably, but the action was still close and worth cheering for.