This wasn't how it was supposed to be.
As Christine Danzer walked into the MacArthur High School Gym on November 8, the first-year head coach had a vision of how this night would go.
Obviously, a victory would be in the cards but most importantly her parents would be in attendance. On this night her mother's seat sat empty.
Just four months prior, Danzer's mother, Audrei, succumbed to metastatic liver cancer.
She was 63.
"I had a pretty rough summer," Danzer said. "I was really struggling this summer with that. Coming back after experiencing such a traumatic event, basketball really helped ground me. I've dedicated everything that I'm doing this year to her. She was a big supporter of our team.
"I just feel a little bit hungrier for each and every win."
Getting that first head-coaching win didn't take long. Danzer, who will wear one of her mother's shirts and pieces of jewelry every game this year, watched as her group blew out Conroe 42-21 for career win No. 1.
"I'd like to think she was smiling down on me for that," Danzer said.
What made an already terrible situation even worse is that no one saw it coming. In May, Danzer said that her mother underwent gallbladder surgery. In June, she was diagnosed with cancer and in July she passed away.
"It's definitely not easy. I'm an only child so it's just me and my dad left," Danzer said. "Having sports has always been an escape for me and I continue to use it for that. It gives me a lot of power. My mom was a huge basketball supporter, she loved the girls I coached."
As Danzer has gone through this personal tragedy off the court, the MacArthur players have rallied around their coach. They want to win not only for the team and their coach but for Audrei.
"We're all a family," MacArthur senior Jada Stewart said. "Everything's for her this year."
The Winter Edition of VYPE Aldine ISD is here!
In the 2019 VYPE Aldine ISD Winter Edition there is a ton of amazing photos, including ones from the middle school football championships, stories and more for fans to read up on.
Start with the features.
VYPE sat down with Aldine's Jayden Payne as he reflects on saving a woman and her daughter from flood waters in September. Also, MacArthur girls hoops coach Christine Danzer went through personal tragedy this summer and had her team to lean on and has dedicated this season to her mom.
VYPE also previews every girls and boys basketball team in Aldine ISD as they get their seasons going and recaps the fall sports seasons.
This is a must-get edition for Aldine ISD fans as it will be making its way out into the Aldine ISD community this week.
View this post on InstagramAldine Winter Edition Cover Reveal 🚨 Check out the “Big Tickets" for Aldine ISD Hoops as @thabratpoohhh / @32xgoat / @iam.reggie grace the cover. #txhshoops #VYPECampus
A post shared by VYPE + Aldine ISD (@vype_aldineisd) on Dec 11, 2019 at 11:11am PST