The stands in the Youth Center gym are filled with family members for the big game.

Redstone’s two 10-and-under basketball teams warm up on each end of the court. The two coaches, Johnnie Irby and Michael Crum, have competed against each other for years while leading their sons’ teams.

The scoreboard clock nears two minutes so officials Rod Harris and Maurice Baker call for the teams’ captains and coaches. Baker asks the two captains to shake hands before he gives pregame instructions. He confirms the importance of sportsmanship.

The game has four six-minute quarters. It finishes with the Rockets, Irby’s team, beating the Heat 33-13. Their tough defense makes the difference against Crum’s team.

Afterward the players line up to shake hands. Within minutes, two other teams take the court for the next game.

In this venue, sportsmanship comes first. That should apply at every competition level.

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