The boys basketball team got after it this weekend against some tough competition at the Minnesota Pacesetter tournament in St. Cloud. Their hard work on the court was steadied by times of discipline in the locker room.

Each year Hillcrest athletes begin a long road of preparation. Routine open gym times have some students flipping tires on the football field while others are jumping rope or honing their jump shot for a sports season that is months away. When the balls slowly trickle away from the basket as the lights turn out Comet players are seen connecting in a unique way.

After the Pacesetter tournament this past weekend Hillcrest players huddled under a stairway to discuss their successes. As the conversation shifted to fundamentals that need more honing during the open gym times there was unique focus in the eyes of the players. A clarity came over the conversation because of a simple practice the team conducts after each summer gathering. They prayed.

During their prayer time the Comets actively submitted to the Lord. In prayer, players take a purposed step to acknowledging that they are not perfect. Prayer puts people in a posture of submission. And for the Comet ball team this submissive practice allows them to critique their play and understand their roles as they continue to workout their faith through disciplined steps in their daily life.

The tournament was a great opportunity for the players to gather in unity under the banner of Christ. The coaches drew the team to consider how Hillcrest basketball can be a microcosm of the body of believers and a witness to others. These small moments will create significant building blocks in the lives of these young men. It's one of the many practices that makes time at Hillcrest worth so much more than a diploma.

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