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High school runner Meghan Vogel helps carry injured opponent across finish line (Video)

There was some outstanding sportsmanship displayed at the Ohio state track meet last Saturday.

Meghan Vogel, a junior at West Liberty-Salem High School in Ohio, won the state’s Division III 1,600 meter race, but she gained more attention for a race in which she finished last.

Vogel was running the 3,200 meter race and about 50 meters from the finish line when she saw Arden McMath, a sophomore from Arlington High School, collapse. Instead of passing her, Vogel stopped to carry her competitor across the finish line.

Race rules say Vogel should have been automatically disqualified for helping another runner, but the Springfield News-Sun says meet management took no action. They gave McMath 14th place and a finishing time of 12:29.90, and Vogel 15th in 12:30.24. Vogel made sure McMath crossed the finish line first because she had been ahead of her.

“Helping her across the finish line was a lot more satisfying than winning the state championship,” Vogel told the News-Sun.

“What a selfless act,” said Arlington coach Paul Hunter. “She could have just gone around Arden. But she chose to help. I’ve never seen that at a state meet. That’s real sportsmanship.”

We’ve seen other outstanding acts of sportsmanship in track and cross country before, and this ranks right up there. It’s great to have a heartwarming story like this to balance out all the negative ones we see in high school athletics.

Well done Meghan, well done.

H/T Richard Deitsch

Master Sgt. Robert Buresh surprises his daughters at the Twins game (Video)

Regardless of the number of times we see this same move executed, it will never get old. We may get tired of ceremonial first pitches or quirky mascot antics before a game begins, but a solider returning home from overseas to surprise his family is always fun to watch. As you can see from the video above, Master Sgt. Robert Buresh returned home from Afghanistan over Memorial Day Weekend and surprised his two daughters prior to the Twins game against the Tigers.

As expected, the girls were thrilled. Kudos to the Twins for arranging it and allowing the Buresh family to enjoy a Memorial Day that they’ll never forget.

Mikey Stolzenberg is a 12-year-old lacrosse player without arms or legs (Video)

Mikey Stolzenberg is a 12-year-old boy from Florida who was born seemingly healthy and with all his limbs in tact. He remained that way until a freak infection cost him his arms and legs when he was eight years old. Stolzenberg scratched a mosquito bite when he was playing football, and that led to a bacterial infection called Chromobacterium Violaceum that left his body in septic shock two days later. An immune deficiency called Chronic Granulomatous Disease is what left him susceptible to the infection. In order to save his life, all of Stolzenberg’s limbs had to be amputated.

“I was grateful I still had Michael,” Michael’s mother Laura Stolzenberg told Lacrosse Magazine. “We had him, now we just had to rebuild him. …

“Michael embraces his difference. We told him, ‘Your hands and feet do not define who you are.’”

[Read more...]

Trent Richardson taking leukemia patient Courtney Alivis to her senior prom

Courntey Alvis had to a face a life-changing moment at the age of 16 when she was diagnosed with leukemia. Because of her weakened immune system, Alvis was told she basically couldn’t leave her house — no driving, no going to the mall, no seeing a movie or taking part in anything that a healthy high schooler would be off enjoying.

Alvis was told that she could attend her junior prom last year if she took the necessary precautions. Doctors told her she would have had to wear rubber gloves and a mask and not touch anybody. Unsurprisingly, she decided to pass. After a year of treatment and fighting the disease, Courtney is now determined to attend her senior prom and end high school on a high note. The problem was she didn’t have a date.

With the help of her uncle, Alvis was put in touch with Alabama star Trent Richardson. The 2011 Heisman trophy finalist is solving the no date problem.

“I’m very excited but I’m also really nervous,” Alvis said according to WSFA. “I watch Trent all the time on TV and he’s going to be come with me.”

Good on you, Trent. It’s been said that attitude and demeanor are some of the most important factors in being able to fight off cancer. Here’s hoping Richardson’s gesture will help Courtney Alvis on her road to recovery.

H/T Eye on College Football
Photo credit: Derick E. Hingle-US PRESSWIRE

Jeremy Guthrie plays catch with Twitter follower, cancer survivor Woody Roseland

More professional athletes should take the time to use their Twitter accounts the way that Jeremy Guthrie used his on Tuesday. With all the nonsense we see on Twitter and other forms of social media — much of which is posted by professional athletes — we tend to forget that these mediums can be used to do good things. When Guthrie tweeted Tuesday afternoon that he was looking for someone to play catch with him at Coors Field, he ended up connecting with a follower named Woody Roseland. As promised, the two spent some time playing catch together.

[Read more...]

Gettysburg College stroke victim Cory Weismann sinks unforgettable free throw

Three years ago, Cory Weismann went through a life-changing experience. The Gettysburg College senior nearly died when he suffered a stroke following his freshman season. The stroke left Weismann unable to walk and speak at the time, but three years later he has made his way back onto the Gettysburg basketball team. Prior to Saturday night, he did not participate in any games. Going through practice and being on the official roster was plenty for Weismann after all he had been through. With the help of Washington coach Rob Nugent, that all changed last weekend.

Leading up to their Senior Day game against Washington, Gettysburg coach George Petrie decided to insert Weismann into the starting lineup so he could hear his name announced during pre-game introductions. The plan was for him to be removed from the game immediately following the tip-off.

“My goal all along was just to get back on the court,” Weismann said according to the Baltimore Sun. “Hearing my name announced on the loudspeaker is something I’ll never forget.”

Weismann was given an opportunity to do more than just hear his name. With Washington trailing by 14 and under a minute left in the game, Nugent sent one of his assistant coaches over to the Gettysburg bench with a plan to give Weismann a chance to score. Nugent told Petrie to put Weismann in and he would have one of his players foul him, that way he would go to the line with a chance to make his mark on the box score.

With the crowd on its feet and every person in the building praying Cory would sink at least one free throw, he missed the first. The second, however, was never in doubt.

“That was surprisingly the least pressure I ever felt in my basketball career,” Weismann said after the game. “I thought to myself: ‘After three years of hard work and all I’ve been through, there’s no way this ball’s not going in.”

It went in and the gym exploded as if everyone’s team had just won a national championship. The win happened to be Petrie’s 322nd, which was enough to make him the winningest coach in Gettysburg history. I’ll let you guess whether or not he kept the game ball.

Teen in Wheelchair Scores Touchdown in High School Game (Video)

Trent Glaze is a senior at Fairfield Union in Ohio and he’s been using a wheelchair for the last 10 years because he has muscular dystrophy. The young man loves football and has been a manager for the school’s football team the past few years. After attending every team practice and function, he was invited to be on the team this year and serve as team captain.

Glaze’s dream was to participate in a game and that came true on Friday. Moments after his team lost to Teays Valley, both teams remained on the field so that Fairfield Union could run one more play: a handoff to Glaze. The youngster, dressed in full uniform and pads, took the handoff in his wheelchair and scooted into the end zone for a touchdown.

Here’s a video of the play:

We’ve shown you so many awful stories that took place in high school football games. There have been stories about locker room assaults and players getting arrested during games. It’s nice to balance those out with a heartwarming story like this one.

via Off the Bench