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The Case of the Missing Trophy

Written by Alexandra

Mrs. Vallina
5th Grade
Whiteside School

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Washington Elementary Girl's Basketball Team had made it to the end of the basketball season tied for first place, and it was the night of the final game.  The team was determined to win this final game and bring the first place trophy home.  Sarah Simon was the Team Captain and played center for the team and had a fantastic season.  She was certain to win the Most Valuable Player award this year for her outstanding performance for the Washington Patriots Girl's Basketball Team.  The team was the best team that the school had seen in three years. trophy1.jpg (4137 bytes)
The girls on the team really pulled for one another and supported each other. Everyone was behind the team; well everyone except Jane Adams. Jane had tried out for the team, but she didn't make it. She was not a very good loser and had not been very nice to anyone throughout the season. She was particularly angry with the Patriot's Team Captain, Sarah Simon. She had bugged her at recess, in the lunchroom, and on the way to and from school on the bus. Sarah had tried the nice approach by telling her that there was always next season, and if she worked on her foul shots and passing, she was sure to make the team next year. Nothing seemed to make her happy. She began teasing Sarah and making fun of anything she did wrong. Sarah decided to stay away from her until the season was over.
The final game of the season was a home game and the gym was crowded. The concession stand opened early and the Patriot Cheerleaders never looked or sounded better. You could feel the excitement in the air. The Patriots had won a game and lost a game against the Cadets and so this game certainly wasn't a sure thing. At the end of the first half the score was tied - 26 to 26. The Patriots knew they needed to concentrate to win. There was one minute left in the game and Sarah was fouled by a Cadet player. She knew she had to make this shot. It seemed as though everyone in the gym held their breath as she took her foul shot, and to Sarah's amazement she made it. The Patriots did a great job on defense trophy2.jpg (5133 bytes)
and the Cadets were unable to score again. The clock ran out and the Patriots won the game. The final score was 47 to 46. The gym went crazy and the team carried Sarah out on their shoulders. It had been a magical night!
On Friday morning after the Pledge of Allegiance was read over the loudspeaker, Coach Johnson announced the score and named Sarah Simon the Most Valuable Player. Every one in Sarah's classroom stood and applauded, except for Jane. Jane Adams did not congratulate Sarah at recess or even mention the team's win. The school assembly was scheduled for next Monday at 1:45 p.m. The Patriots were to receive their basketball pins, the championship trophy, and Sarah was to receive her MVP Trophy. The weekend seemed to drag by, and finally Monday morning arrived.
As Sarah rode the bus to school all she could think about was the assembly on Monday afternoon. At around 1:00 p.m. Coach Johnson arrived at Sarah's homeroom. Sarah saw Coach Johnson speaking with Ms. Jenkins in the doorway. Coach Johnson looked really upset. Ms. Jenkins asked Sarah to step outside in the hallway. Coach Johnson said," Sarah, I'm sorry to have to tell you this, but the MVP Trophy has been stolen from my office." "I'm not going to be able to present it to you today during the assembly. We've looked everywhere, and haven't found it. I'll simply announce your name today, and have a new trophy engraved and give it to you at a later date." Sarah said, " That's O.K. Coach Johnson; it's more important to me that the team is together to receive the championship trophy."
Sarah was really disappointed, but she didn't want the Coach to feel worse then she already did. Coach Johnson said, " Thanks for understanding Sarah; I'm really sorry about this." Sarah walked back into the classroom, and the other students all stared at her. Ms. Jenkins knew that she needed to tell the class something, so she simply explained what Coach Johnson had told them. The entire class was really upset; everyone except Jane. Ms. Jenkins noticed Jane's reaction to her announcement. The bell rang and Ms. Jenkins dismissed her students. She called Coach Johnson on the phone and told her about Jane's reaction to her announcement. Coach Johnson became suspicious and walked down to the office and spoke with Principal Smith.
While Coach Johnson and Principal Smith were speaking to one another, the secretary came to the door and said that there was a student waiting to speak to them. Principal Smith opened her office door and standing there was Jane Adams.  She was holding a gym bag and looked really upset. She stepped slowly into Principal Smith's office and said, " I've done something wrong, and I'd like to tell you about it." She went onto say," I took this MVP Trophy from your office Coach Johnson. I was so sick of everyone thinking that Sarah was so great. I've been so angry with her since basketball tryouts, and wanted to make her feel the way I've felt since I didn't make the basketball team. I thought Sarah would really lose it when she found out about the trophy, but instead she handled it very well. That's when I realized I was wrong, and decided to come to you."
Coach Johnson said," Well Jane I'm glad you did decide to come and speak with us. I'd like you to also speak with Sarah and tell her about this. I feel Sarah's deserves an explanation." Jane reluctantly agreed, and waited for Coach Johnson to call Sarah to the office. Sarah arrived and seemed nervous and somewhat confused. She couldn't imagine why she was being called to the office. She hadn't done anything wrong. When she entered Principal Smith's office and saw Jane and the MVP Trophy setting on the desk; she knew then that Jane had taken it. Her mind began spinning with a thousand thoughts. She wondered if Coach Johnson had caught Jane, or had Principal Smith found it in her locker. Before she could say anything, Jane said," I took the MVP Trophy from Coach Johnson's office and hid it in this gym bag in my locker. I wanted you to fell as disappointed as I did the day that the basketball team list was posted and I didn't make it. When I saw how you took the news in the classroom, I knew I was wrong, so I came to Principal Smith's office to return the MVP Trophy. I'm really sorry. I hope that you can forgive me."
Sarah said," I forgive you Jane, but it's like I've told you before. The important thing is the team, and being a part of something and helping one another. It's not about being MVP, or getting a trophy. I was disappointed when Coach Johnson told me about the missing trophy today, but I knew that what we had accomplished as a team couldn't be stolen. I knew that I would remember that for the rest of my life. I didn't need a trophy to remind me of that."
Coach Johnson and Principal Smith asked Jane and Sarah to wait outside. They discussed what had happened and decided to have Jane assist in the presentations to the basketball team at the assembly that afternoon. They told Jane to write a brief speech about Sarah and the team to read at the assembly. That afternoon at the assembly, the entire school cheered and clapped as the Patriots took center stage in the auditorium. Jane read her speech and Coach Johnson and Principal Smith handed out the pins to the players and the MVP Trophy to Sarah. It was a great day, and the assembly, Sarah asked Jane to join the Patriots at the Victory Party for pizza and soda.
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