Believing is seeing for Matt Steven

March 12, 2009 8:41:01 PM PDT
A visually impaired equipment manager free throws the impossible. Matt was born premature, weighing just over 3 pounds. Hemorraging behind his eyes left him with two detached retinas. He'd have both eyes removed by the time he was 12.

"Not knowing what he's gonna do with his life, it was very scary. You want the best for them; you want everything to be ok. It's still hard to talk about," Joan Steven, Matt's mom, said.

Matt Steven's mom is thrilled to talk about her son. She was cheering him on last month for a moment she never dreamed about during those first dark days.

Matt's the equipment manager for a local CYO team that his brother Joe coaches. Last month during a tournament, they got a crazy idea, make Matt the designated foul shooter. That set the stage. With 10 seconds to play, their best player was fouled with the team down by 1. It came down to two free throws to win it all.

"After I got in, I took the first shot, and it went in, and tied up the game," Matt said.

"When he came out, my heart was pounding and then when he made the first one, I was happy, at least he tied it," Joan said.

But he still had one to go.

"When he made the second one, I was just screaming. It was really exciting," Joan said.

"He just had the biggest grin on his face?I think being blind actually helped him. He doesn't see the crowd, doesn't see the scoreboard, doesn't see how nervous we all are. Just up there smiling and happy to be a part of this team and this league," Joe Steven, Matt's brother, said.

Matt may have not seen his shot, but he did feel its impact.

Afterall, this was more than a game-winning free throw. It was a statement that anyone has the power to achieve their goals.

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