The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

Basketball match

Describe the Basketball game between Reardan and Wellpinit. What makes Junior want to play in the game?

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Junior tries out for the Reardan basketball team after his father encourages him to dream big. Reardan will be playing Wellpinit in the first game of the season. As the Reardan bus approaches the reservation school, the Indians throw rocks at Junior and everyone turns their backs on him as he enters the gym, except for Rowdy, who faces Junior head-on. Junior is nervous because he knows that Rowdy is the reservation’s star player and is looking at Junior like he wants to kill him. As the players warm up on the court, someone in the crowd flicks a coin at Junior and hits him in the head. He starts bleeding profusely and has to sit out the first half of the game. Eugene, a former paramedic, gives Junior stitches so he can return to the game for the second half.

During the second half of the game, Junior courageously returns to the court, but Rowdy knocks him unconscious. While Junior is in an ambulance on his way to the hospital, Reardan loses the game and a fight breaks out. Junior wakes up to see Coach sitting by his bedside. Coach praises Junior's determination and sits awake with him all night talking.