Sports

8th Grade Girls Basketball Team Perfect Since 5th Grade

The St. Celestine 8th grade girls basketball team hasn't lost a game since they started playing together in the 5th grade. (Credit: CBS)

The St. Celestine 8th grade girls basketball team hasn’t lost a game since they started playing together in the 5th grade. (Credit: CBS)

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ELMWOOD PARK, Ill. (CBS) – It’s hard to achieve perfection, especially in sports, but the 8th grade girls’ basketball team at St. Celestine’s in Elmwood Park is almost there.

“We didn’t pay much attention to it for a while. We’re more about getting better as players, getting better as a team. Then it started to surface that this was something rare that doesn’t happen very often,” says Head Coach John McKenna.

It rarely happens at any level. These ten girls have been playing together since fifth grade and they have never lost a game. The St. Celestine’s Elementary School team has won 15 tournaments and posted 145 straight victories over four years.

They don’t know what losing is like.

“Ah, no,” says a smiling Shannon Faherty.

“We don’t think about it coming into games. We just try to do our best every game,” adds Annie McKenna.

What makes this team so successful, so good?

“Our passing, our working together and we’re not selfish,” says Caitlin Aylward.

“It’s a cycle, you know? Winning becomes a habit and winning continuously builds character and this team has a lot of character,” says Coach McKenna.

The wins haven’t come easily, because opponents are all aware of their winning streak and give them their best effort, but they’ve survived, including a few close calls.

“Some games are close, some games are not. The close games we get scared. Every team wants to beat us. We know a lot of people on other teams and they always say ‘they’re going to beat you,'” says Aylward. But it hasn’t happened yet in four years.

“It went by so quickly, the four years … it’s so exciting for our team and for our school,” adds Faherty.

And, now the team needs just six more wins and they will shoot off to high school perfect.