A week has passed since our season ended at Regionals and my battle wounds haven't healed yet. The scrapes on my knees and bruises on my elbows will fade soon but the heartache will take some time. The weekend wasn't magical, but the season was. On Saturday morning, we didn't play like a team that deserved to go to Nationals. It got better, but not by much. We had some shining moments, like a big comeback against UCLA to take the game to double game point, a 13-0 run against Midas, and a smaller comeback against SDSU, but we didn't have a single really solid game that made me feel like we truly deserved it. I felt the altitude in my legs and couldn't perform at my potential at the end of the day. Against both Colorado College and Colorado State, I felt like more of a non-factor as a cutter than I had for the past two years. I did expect more from myself then than I even had, but I felt way stronger against even the best teams in the country like Oregon and UCSB.
There are way too many "what if's" running through my head that could have taken us to Nationals. What if Ferris played in the Series? What is we didn't lose Ashley at Sectionals? What if we beat UCLA on universe in pool play and went into the game to go after a bye like they did? What if Regionals were held in So Cal and we were the ones with home field advantage instead of playing Colorado State twice with their pumped up sidelines and drunk fans? I can't help thinking that if any of those things had gone our way, I would be writing about whether cows are happier in California or Wisconsin instead of my broken heart. It feels like a lot didn't go our way, but for every one of our misfortunes, we probably had something else work out for us. What if Carolyn didn't find the time between all the studying for med school to play with us? What if we had to compete in the Northwest? What if our rookie class wasn't so ballin' that half of them were good enough to sub in even in close games?
Losing something so important in my life is painful. I miss feeling like part of something special, sharing a goal, and working towards it with my 20 best friends, but it wouldn't hurt so much to lose that feeling if it wasn't so great while it lasted.