By Akshay Mundra
Xavier came up to me and not only thanked me for playing a game against him, but also asked me how he could improve as a player. Xavier is going into his twelfth grade at St. Patrick’s, and participated in the program last year as well. Not only is he deeply devoted to the game of basketball (making him a very good player), but alsoworks harder than anyone and is unbelievably kind to everyone. Leading up to this moment he had challenged me to a game of three on three with some other kids his age that had stuck around after camp was over. After a very close game with Xavier’s team ultimately ending up victorious, he came up to me and asked me what he could work on.
Later at night, as I thought more and more about those 30 seconds when Xavier had came up to me I began to realize how significant this simple gesture was, and see deeper into the kind of person Xavier really is. First, after winning the game, he was still looking for ways to improve. Second, he sought the advice of a thirteen year old, someone who is four years younger than him. Finally, he came to me and asked me when no one else was watching. He was not worried about impressing the coaches or anything of those sorts, he just wanted advice. As I was thinking about this moment, another question arose; why wasn’t I asking him how I could improve? I was younger, and I had just lost the game so why was it him that was asking me how improve? This just demonstrates how Xavier has no arrogance or ego at all. I could just tell from the way he was speaking to me and listening so intently to every word that came out of my mouth, that he was genuinely asking me. These 30 seconds allowed me to realize the amazing non arrogance, drive for excellence and overall kindness Xavier truly possesses.