The West Hempstead Rams varsity boys’ basketball team lost 62-43 to H. Frank Carey High School on Dec. 7. However, for the Cosgrove family, this game meant much more than winning or losing. Ed Cosgrove, who has been the head coach for the Rams for the past 15 years, got to compete against his sons, Matt and James — who play for Carey — for the first time.
“I was going through a gamut of emotions before the game,” Cosgrove admitted. “But when the ball went up, I forgot all about it. It was game on until the end of the game, but I’m proud of my boys. Other than being on the wrong end of the final score, I’m glad we were able to schedule this game.”
Scheduled as a non-league game, Cosgrove said the idea of playing against his sons came to him a few years ago, when his oldest son, Ed Jr., played basketball at Carey. West Hempstead had only scrimmaged Carey in recent years. In addition, Cosgrove managed to arrange his basketball schedule where he would be able to attend some of his sons’ games.
“It turned out to be better than I thought it would,” Cosgrove said. “It was unique because it was Carey’s first game of the season. I thought it would be tough to game plan against my boys, but I was more focused on trying to get my guys ready, and maybe it was better that way.”
While Cosgrove was disappointed that his team didn’t execute some their plays, he said that he has learned that regardless of the final score, “you can’t take this stuff home with you.”
“I fully understand that at this stage of my career now,” Cosgrove continued. “At the end of the game, I went back to being a dad again.”
After the game, Cosgrove’s family went out to dinner, where he said he was the butt of the jokes for the night. “They got to brag and smile, but I guess that was to be expected,” he said. “I’m sure if I had won, I would’ve had some fun with it, too.”
Matt, who is a senior, will play baseball at Concordia College, while James, who is a sophomore, has aspirations of playing college basketball.
“As a lifetime athlete myself, and now being a coach, it’s nice to see my boys stay active in athletics,” Cosgrove said. “However, I’m looking to even the score next year. I can’t wait to get another shot.”