Graduation Contest Entry #6

Will, my son who is graduating from high school, has been playing baseball as long as he can remember. He is a talented player with a great head for the game. He has played all the way through school and in high school he has been a true utility player having played every position on the field.

Last Friday Will pitched a complete game for his high school team, the Panthers, and they won 5 to 3. Reading that score doesn’t sound newsworthy but what if I told you that win ended a 39 game losing streak? Yes, you read that correctly. The Panthers had gone two complete seasons, two years, without a win.

How difficult it must be to suit up and take the field knowing that your team will likely be overmatched and may even get shellacked, game after game. If experience in losing builds character, Will has built a fortress of character.

Will took time over the summer to pick up freshman players and work with them on their skills even though pre-season workouts were months away. He was part of a work team that cleaned out the batting cages and rebuilt the pitching mounds in the bullpen. They worked to get the field in the best shape it has been in since he arrived at the school. He takes his title of Team Captain seriously. He works to keep the team’s spirits high and he will leave the program better than he found it.

One of Will’s college application essays was about redefining victory based on his experience as a baseball player for the Panthers. Victory becomes playing 7 innings, something most teams take for granted. Victory is watching a bench player get a hit in his last game his senior year. Victory is having fans that attend every game no matter the outcome. These will be the things he remembers.

I am so proud of Will and what he accomplished last Friday with his team. The joy of these resilient players was unmatched and there were few dry eyes for those of us in the bleachers. This game was so emotional for us I doubt the graduation ceremony will be as poignant. Now if they can just do it again!

Written by: Will’s mother, Ann


To enter our graduation contest, tell us what surprised you most about your high school or college grad. You could win up to $100 in graduation product at Pear Tree! Send your entry to with your name, email and phone number and then watch for it to be posted on our blog. But hurry–this graduation contest ends April 1st!