Go Prowlers!

Get ‘em! Get ‘em! Kill ‘em! Get ‘em! Kill ‘em

Go Prowlers!
Photo by Nik Shuliahin ?? / Unsplash

by Sean Ennis

The Old Rats motorcycle gang bought the Bramble High varsity basketball team new jerseys, jumpsuits, and sneakers. The kids look great, and it was much needed. But now the gang is getting rowdy in the bleachers, cornering the volunteer referees in the parking lot, and the rumor is they punctured our rival’s bus’s tires after a loss. When there’s an away game, the Old Rats escort the team on their monstrous bikes to the opposing gymnasium, engines roaring. And they’ve introduced a chant. It goes, Get ‘em! Get ‘em! Kill ‘em! Get ‘em! Kill ‘em, and the cheerleaders have adopted it. But they don’t really mean it. It’s just the way people talk about sports.

The Saint Syncletica High Anchorites have been very good at basketball in recent years. They believe God is on their side, singing short hymns at halftime instead of staying loose. If you focus on the players’s mouths during the game, you’ll notice they are in a constant state of prayer. Their coach, Father Ross, had a D1 scholarship, but chose the seminary, the Cross, and of course, celibacy.

The Bramble Prowlers had an unfortunate mascot, and the yearly objections were agreed upon, but nothing changed. What, they’d finally say, was the harm? The Old Rats were clearly turning the Bramble Prowlers into some sort of extension of their gang. A younger, more athletic cohort who had a debt to repay.

My favorite part of the game is when the offense is rotating, setting blocks, looking for the perfect shot, while the defense has their hands up in exaltation, trying to stick to their assignment. To call it a dance would be sloppy. This is high school basketball. And this is one way the cataclysmic battle between Good and Evil takes place, by proxy, next Friday night, sneakers squeaking.

Sean Ennis is the author of Cunning, Baffling, Powerful (Thirty West). More pieces from this project have appeared in Flash Boulevard, New World Writing, and Bruiser. More of his work can be found at seanennis.net