You know those sports drink-type commercials where a player puts up a game-winning shot attempt and the entire audio goes silent except for a dramatic heartbeat? Then the shot goes in, everyone goes crazy and the player takes a big swig as the voiceover drops the tagline and the drink company’s logo appears on the screen?
Well, get ready to be thirsty for a sports drink, except this is no commercial — it’s real life.
To set the scene, Catholic Memorial of Waukesha, Wisconsin, and Waukesha West were knotted up at 54 with 14.7 seconds to go in the game on Thursday.
Waukesha West inbounded the ball and ran a play, then got a great cut to the rim and what looked to be the game-winning layup to go up 56-54.
But the Waukesha West player made the biggest rookie mistake you can make: She left time on the clock.
And that meant Catholic Memorial’s Claire Levendoski had the ball in her hands at half-court, where she put up the shot heard ’round the “SportsCenter” Top 10.
And just like those sports drink commercials, the arena went dead silent with the shot in the air before erupting in celebration when it went in the basket:
So many things could have happened in this situation.
Levendoski could have missed the shot off the rim or the backboard — a desperation heave coming to naught as the hero of the game became the girl from Waukesha West who made the layup seconds earlier.
Levendoski could have missed the shot badly, airballing it by a mile and getting the infamous Carlton Banks from “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” meme treatment (as in this example from a different context in 2018):
But she didn’t miss. Instead, Levendoski was the hero of her team’s last home game of the season. Now, she has a memory to take with her wherever else life may lead her.
It’s been a rough year for Catholic Memorial; the win was just their second of the year in a dreadful 2-20 season, according to MaxPreps.
They hadn’t won a game since Dec. 14, and they nearly lost what would have been an absolute heart-breaker on Thursday if not for Levendoski’s heroics.
So be proud of this one, Catholic Memorial girls’ basketball. Get the A.V. club to make you a mockup of a sports drink commercial and put it on Twitter so we can retweet it all over the internet.
And nice job, Claire Levendoski. Celebrate your team’s win — you deserve it.
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