In just about any team sport, you've likely heard that communication is key.
"Basketball is a very verbal sport when you're on defense and helping for help side and calling for it," said senior Ryan Hunt.
And Centennial High School's varsity squad knows that when teammate Chris Caulfield is on the court, you just need to speak up a bit.
"They've known me for a long time they know how to communicate with me," he said. "Communication is fine, they know to talk louder."
"He adapts more to us than we adapt to him," said teammate Hunt. "He's always good to play with and communication has never really been a problem."
But adapting to a noisy gym was a problem until Caulfield remembered one of his idols, Michael Lizzaraga. He's a former Division 1 basketball player who was also born deaf.
"He had an interpreter and he liked her a lot and I said I need that," added Caulfield. "I need an interpreter as well."
That's where Unit 4's Sarah Loftus comes in.
"Sarah and I sat down talked about how we're going to create different signs for basketball," said Caulfield.
"It's completely different being in a classroom versus being in a gym with a basketball coach," added Loftus. "I had to learn basketball lingo and figure out what they meant by it."
The pair started off with some basic American Sign Language. But there's no rulebook when it comes to signing for basketball.
"We use some conceptually accurate signed English which is just signing the words and not necessarily what they mean but it makes sense to Chris," said Loftus.
That includes some handy nicknames for his teammates. Learning the lingo was one thing, but executing it in the midst of an intense practice is another. And it starts with coach Tim Lavin.
"We do a dance if you will. He has to say something, I have to get that message across to Chris but I also want to stay out of the way," said Loftus.
"There were some incidents when his back was turned and it would be hard for him to hear some things," said coach Lavin. "But she can get him and instruct him with what was going on."
Hunt said, "It's very hard to be able to stay in the game and look at an interpreter, so it's pretty inspirational that he can do that."
Inspirational, but just another day at the office for Caulfield and Loftus. That is if your office had a court, a hoop and a mindset to rise above life's challenges.
"I would encourage any student with any disability, not just deafness, to pursue their dreams and go after what they love," said Loftus.
"You've got to find an interpreter like Sarah," said Caulfield. "Because if you can get an interpreter like Sarah you're going to have a good time."
Caulfield is a junior but he'll be taking part in senior night Tuesday. He's graduating a year early and is attending the Rochester Institute of Technology this fall. And he's doing so on a scholarship.
To see part one of this two part series, click here!