For 16 year old Trae Gage, basketball has created opportunities he could have never dreamed would exist. As he progresses through his High School Basketball career, he is setting an example of what is possible with hard work and a commitment to Be Better Every Day.
Tyson Gage and his wife Laura will always remember making the decision to adopt Trae, a 9 month old child from Guatemala. Only a few short years later at the age of 5, they noticed a love for the game of basketball starting to develop.
“We always wanted to put our kids in environments to succeed. We look at sports as life education.” Recalls Tyson.
SHAPING The ENVIRONMENT
Putting Trae in an environment to succeed meant a lot of nights and weekends of Dad rebounding at the local YMCA. Tyson remembers long days trying to get up hundreds of shots surrounded by other players in the community gym.
“It used to take us 2 or more hours to get up 500 shots” said Tyson.
After 10+ years of chasing rebounds, Tyson and Laura decided that they would invest in Trae in a big way by purchasing a Dr. Dish Home that he could use in their backyard court. Little did they know the journey that was about to transpire.
PLAYING WITH A PURPOSE
Looking to emulate his basketball idol Dame Lillard, Trae never let his height hold him back on the basketball court. In March of 2022, he pursued a dream that ties back to his roots. Trae and his family traveled to Guatemala where Trae tried out for the 18U team. Not only did Trae qualify for the 18U team, but he earned a roster spot on the Guatemalan National team!
See a video below of Trae and his National teammates training in Guatemala.
PAYING THE PRICE
What is the secret to Traes success? Put simply, hard work, and sacrifice. His dad says “there is not a day that he does not shoot” when referencing his work ethic. With the Dr. Dish in their driveway, Trae puts up 1,000 shots per hour nearly every day. Aside from qualifying for his home country's National team, Trae has had success on his school's hardwood as well.
Tyson and Trae will always remember his first High School basketball appearance. Trae came in late in the game, the team trailing by 20 points. Not only did Trae touch the floor, but he made an immediate impact. He drained 6 3-point buckets and propelled his team to a come from behind win in his first varsity minutes.
This year, as Trae enters his second season of High School Basketball, he has clear goals for his future.
“I want to play professionally. Either in the NBA, or overseas, playing basketball for a living.”
He knows that he is in the early innings of a long journey ahead. But, that only motivates him to outwork his competition, wherever they may be.
“I know the best time to train is when I am tired. My competition has already quit by then”
Coming from Trae, his words of wisdom to younger players are simple.
“If you have big goals, you have to be willing to work hard and make sacrifices. To be great at something you’ve got to be obsessed with it.”
For Dad, the life lessons mean more than the basketball brilliance. After 16 years of putting Trae around people and places to be his best, dad just wants to soak it all in.
“I tell him to focus on his gifts. Outwork everyone else, regardless of your skill. If he does those things, he’ll be successful in anything in life.”
As for today, there is little question about who is winning the one on one battles in the family driveway.
“My dad can beat me in 1 on 1…if I let him,” joked Trae.
We are proud of Trae and the journey he is on to make his parents and home country proud. We’ll be cheering him on as he continues to outwork his competition and Be Better Every Day.