Perhaps hundreds of thousands of free throws are missed and made during the course of a high school basketball season.
Sinking one clutch foul shot last winter for Brandon Bosch proved to be worth more than the single point that represented the difference in Maumee knocking off rival Bowling Green 39-38 in a Northern Lakes League game.
Bosch, who graduated from Maumee in the spring, wrote an essay about his "most defining" high school sports moment and entered it in the Gatorade High School Athlete Scholarship Program.
He became one of only 40 recent high school graduates to be named a winner of the one-time $5,000 scholarship. Thousands annually apply for the scholarship, which is based largely upon athletic and academic performance, as well as the essay writing.
"I was in awe because I didn't think I would have any chance to win," said Bosch, who will attend Miami University (Ohio) starting later this month. "It's a big chunk [the scholarship] and it helps out a lot. I know I did OK in high school, but when you think about all the student-athletes in high school, I didn't think I'd win."
As for the single free throw, which was the only point Bosch scored in the game against BG, it will probably remain forever etched in his memory.
"That was the most interesting game I've ever been involved in," Bosch said. "Every athlete looks forward to moments like that in their athletic careers."
Bosch was an exemplary student-athlete.
Bosch, who stands 6-foot-3, tackled the books just as well as he handled three sports - soccer, basketball and track and field. His stellar grade-point average of 4.7 nearly equaled his basketball scoring average (5.0 points per game). He ranked fifth in his graduating class and plans a double major in business and education with an emphasis on mathematics.
What's the secret to excelling in the classroom?
"I would say time management is probably No. 1 and a good support system of family and friends for all the stuff that you do," said Bosch. "I don't really know that I sacrificed that much, except for maybe some sleep. On Saturdays I would get up early and get all of my work done so I could go out Saturday night.
"I didn't waste a whole lot of time."
Bosch lettered three times in track and twice in basketball, but soccer was his best sport.
A three-year starter, he was a team captain last fall while helping lead the Panthers to a district championship. He finished the season with 18 goals and 20 assists to earn All-Northern Lakes League and all-district first-team recognition.
The midfielder/forward received some interest from small colleges to continue playing soccer, but Bosch passed on those offers. Miami, which only offers club soccer, is where his heart has been set on continuing his education after high school. He said he might play club soccer at Miami.
For now, his focus is on the books.
"I just knew soccer wouldn't be my whole life," Bosch said. "Now it's more important to be a student and have fun. I'm still going to play [recreational] soccer and, ultimately, I'd like to come back and coach."
As part of the Gatorade scholarship, Maumee's athletic department also will receive $1,000 in his honor.
"It means a lot with all the sports I've played and what they've given me over the last few years," said Bosch. "To be able to help out a little means a lot."
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