Saturday, April 25, 2009

Aalim Moor's final high school diary

Here's the final diary entry from backcourter Aalim Moor of St. Mary's High (Berkeley). He and teammate Chris Brew completed their basketball eligibility with a record of 113-20. Only Will Brew, now at Santa Barbara, won more games -- 114 -- as a St. Mary's baller.

Wow! Is that it? It seems like just yesterday when I walked on campus as a skinny little freshman. Four years has flown by so fast. I can say without a doubt it has been the best experience of my life. The people that I have met, the places I've gone and the situations I have faced have shaped and molded me.
Aalim Moor
St. Mary's won 85% with Moor at the helm

Basketball is my life, I love it and it has loved me back. I am so grateful to the game because it has given me so much. It has given me an outlet for me to express myself.

To me, basketball is just like life in that it has a lot of twists and turns, highs and lows and ups and downs. One second you are on top of the world having nothing but success. All your shots are falling, you are dunking on guys, throwing alleys, hitting cats with dimes, blocking their shots and hitting the game winning basket. The next second your shots aren't falling, you're turning the ball over, can't hit a free throw, getting beat off the dribble and you're losing at the buzzer. Everything I just mentioned has been and will continue to be a major part of my life.

As wild and crazy as that sounds, I wouldn't trade those experiences for anything.

I will always treasure ever practice, every workout, every game, every plane ride, every ride in the car with my dad, every team meeting, every film session, every conversation with my coaches (good or bad) and every time I walked in a gym, especially St. Mary's!

I want to thank all my coaches and teachers at St. Mary's for everything they have done for me. They have helped me mature and grow in ways that I can never thank them enough.

I want to thank my parents, my little sister and all my family for all the love, support, advice and sacrifice they have made for me to follow and chase my hoop dreams.

I want to thank all of the people (even those people whom I didn't know and have never met) who came out to my games and showed me so much love and cheered and encouraged my teammates and I night in and night out.

I want to thank all my teammates whom I have gone to war with, you have always had my back and you know I always had yours, and always will for life!

And I can't forget about all of the haters, doubters and critics who always told me I couldn't do it. I don't know if you knew it or not, but you just gave me extra energy and motivation which fueled my fire and helped me to achieve my dreams. I have to thank you too!

Special thanks to SpartanHoops for allowing me to tell my story. It's all love!

Aalim A. Moor, III

Moor is a natural leader

Here's something we wrote as a companion piece to Aalim's diary:

Six seconds remained in the game. Salesian of Richmond was ahead by one. St. Mary's Chris Brew saw an opening but it quickly closed. He handed the ball off to Aalim Moor who drove to the basket and was fouled. No, wait. The official says it's an offensive foul. Two newspaper reporters blogging the game, Matt Smith and Chace Bryson, offered "Chace and I agree it should have been a no-call." But it wasn't. The Pride of Salesian won, ending the season for St. Mary's and Moor's career playing as a Panther. But in the midst of the combination of raucous celebration, raw hurt and severely sprained shoulder he played with in the last five contests, he still clapped for and acknowledged the opposing team.

Why so? Because of his makeup. He understands that it's not all about him. Moor and Salesian-ites Desmond Simmons, Dom Artis and Jabari Brown go way back. "We've been friends for years, we see each other as brothers and have a bond deeper than basketball." For Moor, comradeship supersedes whatever is happening in the moment.

Aalim Moor
College life and ball beckons to Moor
Plus, the St. Mary's tenure of the 6-foot-3, 185 pounder included playing in the NorCal finals three years in a row and going to the state finals last season. Weighty disappointment or worse -- a sense of failure -- are not conditions that incubate in an environment surrounded with so many good times.

Moor added, "Playing at a school like St. Mary's with all its history was an honor. Even though we didn't win a state championship, what I gained academically, athletically and personally are wonderful gifts."

Curiously, performing a role in which he agreeingly subjugated his personal numbers for the betterment of his team -- dealing passes leading to scores has kept many a basketball teammate happy regardless of the level -- was not Moor's forté as a youngster. He said, "Earlier, I was a shooter, I would shoot, shoot, shoot. But becoming a passer at St. Mary's was my way of trying to get everyone comfortable. I was good at it and I never worried about my role because we were successful. We had a wonderful team, I had great teammates and we all share memories that we will carry for a lifetime."

So what are Moor's summer plans? In a word, busy. "I'll be going to summer school at San Jose State, playing with the SJSU guys in the West Valley summer league, working out with trainers Anthony Eggleton, Philippe Doherty and Jeremy Russotti and spending some time with friends," Moor offered.

As for his entry into college basketball, Moor said, "I'll go in and work hard and try to get better, trying to pick the brains of the guys there and learn as much as I can." He added, "I want to do good."

He already has.


Michael said...

Hey cousin. Good news travels fast. My name is Michael White and your father and I are cousins. Down here in the lone star state of Texas, your extended family is aware, proud and smiling at your success.

It is good that you are proud of your accomplishments but, like your father, you are focused on the headlights (future) and not the tail lights.

My prayers are with you as you seek continued success.

Kind Regards,

Michael A. White
Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex

Aalim Moor said...

Thanks cousin I appreciate that support and I am definitely looking forward to the bright future ahead at San Jose State. Its a wonderful University and a great place to be going to college. I'll be in touch soon.

Aalim Moor