Free throw basketball coming to Chester Elementary

Wait for the 'swish': Open to boys and girls ages 9 through 14

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— There is no other sound in sports quite like it: The "swish" when the leather ball hits "NBC" (nothing but cotton). The all-important foul shot.

The best basketball shooters make it seem as so easy, so fluid, smooth, and effortless. Others, even some very famous professionals, struggle at the foul line in front of thousands of spectators with their uncoordinated, herky-jerky motion, throwing up bricks.

The St. Columba Knights of Columbus and Chester Recreation will team up to offer their annual free throw basketball contest be held from 6 to 8 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 25, at Chester Elementary School, 2 Herbert Drive, Chester. The competition is open to all girls and boys from 9 through 14 years old (as of Jan. 1). Each contestant gets 15 tries, and a winner is determined for each gender and age. The champions can then participate in the next level of play and potentially become state champions for their age and gender.

Free throw really is a mind game. All players have done it — in their backyards with their older siblings, on the school playground, or in the gym after practice is over. They set the scene in their heads. You have just been fouled on an easy lay-up, the try no good. Your team is down by one point, two seconds left, the fate of the game, the win, is in your hands. You step to the line, receive the ball, relax. Swish! Okay, tied game.

Ball, relax, swish again — your team won! You've got game.

So come to the gym, have some fun with your friends, see if you've "got game". You need to be able to put a leather ball through an iron ring and hit the cotton net. You need to make a swish.

For more information, call Bob Moran at 469-2875.

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