Sportsmanship is one of those character traits parents and coaches try to instill in student athletes.
Whether an athlete has won or lost, he or she always displays certain poise towards the winners or losers. It is also something the coaches and parents would like to see trickle down to teammates and other players in their respective sports.
The Hugh Campbell Tournament has come and gone and one player from the Sunland Stingers was recognized for his outstanding output of encouragement and sportsmanship among his peers.
Stingers’ big man Chosen Levarity came away with those honors. He was also named to the All-Tournament team for the 34th edition of the Tournament.
The Freeport News caught up with the Stingers’ man in the middle at The Bahamas National High School Basketball Championships last week. The award meant a lot to the Bimini native and credited his upbringing in being the award recipient.
“Sportsmanship actually means a lot to me because that’s how I was brought up from my parents back home in Bimini,” he said, “I just wanted to take what my parents taught and it took me through life and I just want to keep it up.
“This is a small thing compared to what’s ahead of me in life. And I look at the trophy as encouragement to me to keep up what I’m doing. It’s good.”
The Stingers were knocked out of the Hugh Campbell Tournament back on February 25. They dropped their chance to survive in a triple overtime thriller to the CC Sweeting Cobras, 51-46. Nonetheless the experience and competition for Levarity was something meaningful.
“The tournament over there was great. The competition was a little stiff, but I believe I gave it my all. And with me giving my all I got All-Tournament (honors). So, I just want to use that as motivation to push me to even do better. And in those tight situations I want to come out victorious. Not just to put in hard work and then don’t come out with the win. So that’s why I just want to use that as motivation for me.”
Since Levarity joined the team he’s seen the steady improvement in his game from a physical standpoint. Now in his second season under head coach Jay Philippe, Levarity noted how much of a mentor the former Stinger has been in Levarity’s growth.
“Off the court he’s encouraged me continuously. 24/7 he’s on my back telling me how good of a kid I am. On the court he’s always encouraged me and pushed me to do better. He’s always that drive that I need and he always gives me that chip on my shoulder – that I’m not just playing this sport for myself I’m also playing for him, my school, my parents, and my family.”
The second-year Stinger had been told he “talks a lot” and it is something Levarity tends to use a lot during games.
“Well, coach always says I talk a lot so I use that on the court and I’m always talking on defense, and talking to the offense and encouraging my teammates when they get down. Whether it’s a bad pass or if they miss their shot, they look up to me in leadership. I’m always one to encourage people.”
Even though the Stingers were one of the many teams to come up short at the Hugh Campbell Tournament and High School Basketball Nationals Levarity continued to encourage his teammates after the tough losses.
“I’m never the person to always bring them down. I’m the person to uplift their spirits and always make them push harder and get them to forget what their mistake was and to just perfect in the next play. I don’t want them to think about that possession when they mess up.
“I want them to push forward because if they continue to dwell on the mistake they made then it’s going to throw off their whole game. So I just want to be that person who’s always whispering in their ear and telling them to just fix it,” he concluded.
Published Tuesday, March, 14, 2017