I encountered a random chance visit with this young lady quietly dreaming her big dreams within this past year. She approached the Lookeba-Sickles high school baseball dugout with camera in hand. Said she was there to snap some pictures as the annual alumni fundraiser game was taking place. Our small talk banter included mention of me being the oldest and maybe not the smartest player to take the field that night with her mention of plans to attend college after high school.
I had thoughts of sharing how great I used to be relative to the game of baseball, but, didn't. Of course, all of us old guys used to be way better than we really were so probably best I didn't. She may have had thoughts of sharing her plans of becoming All-State and soon playing in the "Big House," but, she didn't. Just a quiet yet pleasant small town personality exuding from a friendly smile that I could immediately discern to be one that folks would just like to be around.
How was I supposed to know that I was sitting there visiting with a future Oklahoma All State athlete? I didn't even know of her dreams much less anything about what was to become a reality at the "Big House." I didn't even know I was related to such athletic greatness, but, coming from the same small town, I should have given heed to the real thought of a real chance of relation.
Interesting stuff if I do say so. Laryn Garrison has been slightly more talkative about her dreams come true narrative after the fact. She has now shared "for as long as I can remember (referring to third grade), I looked up at the All State banner hanging in our gym and thought, I'm gonna be up there someday." After receiving a call from her coach (Tammy Bates) with news of being selected as a member of the Oklahoma Girls Basketball Coaches Association Small School All State West squad, she said "this is definitely a dream come true for me."
Despite now possessing the elite All State branding from the OGBCA, Garrison is recognized as a true team player and said it was Coach Bates who pushed her to become the best she could be. Garrison is the first to give credit to her teammates for Lookeba-Sickles' 24 win season that included her long dreamed for trip to the "Big House." It was only the sixth time in school history that the L-S girls basketball squad had made the time-honored trip to Oklahoma City.
Garrison's basketball skills didn't just show up for one great senior season. History repeated itself three times over and over and over as she was named Caddo County All Tournament Team as a sophomore, junior and senior. As a team, the 2019-2020 L-S girls brought history back to the future as they were crowned Caddo County Tournament Champions for the first time in forty-two (42) years.
While all seniors across the country completely lost the important aspects of the second half of their school year, All State and the dream trip to the "Big House" was already in the books for Laryn Garrison. These rays of light that glisten through a now distressed senior year reality should not go unnoticed. They should be celebrated and recognized with pride. Laryn's mom, Holly Johnston, said they won't be overlooked. "Her dreams from third grade have come true so we will definitely celebrate and remember these accomplishments.
As for Laryn, we can all, by now, hopefully absorb what she will feel when she first sees her name go up on the All State banner that hangs in the gym at Lookeba-Sickles. Makes a fan of #5 wonder what particular girl from this year's third grade class will look up and start dreaming the same dreams.