All-Stars demonstrate what’s right about prep athletics
Whenever I come across the type of comments made by Philadelphia Flyers’ star center Jeremy Roenick over the weekend at a charity golf tournament in Presto, Pa., it makes me glad that I cover some of the best young men and women in the world.
Roenick criticized the players’ union for not taking the contract the National Hockey League offered in February, and then went on a tirade against the fans.
‘The deal in February beats the —- out of the deal we’re gonna sign in July,’ Roenick said.
‘Everybody out there who calls us spoiled because we play a game ‘ they can all kiss my —.’
‘We are trying to get this game back on the ice to make it better for the fans. And if you don’t realize that, then don’t come. We don’t want you in the rink, we don’t want you in the stadium, we don’t want you to watch hockey. Period.’
Not that I care if hockey ever makes it back, but that’s a heck of a way for a professional dope to thank the people who technically pay his salary.
My faith in the world of sports was quickly restored by looking at the Stars last weekend: the Indianapolis Star Indiana All-Stars, that is.
For starters, there’s Corydon Central graduate Dana Beaven, who won the John Wooden/MCL Cafeteria All-Star Citizenship Award at Saturday’s Indiana-Kentucky All-Star Game at Conseco Fieldhouse.
Beaven, who earned 12 letters at CCHS while maintaining a 3.5 GPA, earned the Patricia L. Roy Mental Attitude Award earlier this year after leading her basketball team to the 3A championship game.
The award came with a $1,000 scholarship for the Bellarmine-bound Beaven. But instead of keeping the dough for herself (she was already going to B.U. on a full-ride basketball scholarship), Beaven made the money available for two classmates ($500 each for their college educations).
Then you have Tara Miller, who graduated from North Harrison.
Miller’s lifelong dream was to gain a spot on the All-Stars’ roster.
When she shredded her ACL in November, that dream appeared to be put on hold. Through hard work and dedication, however, Miller fought her way back and landed on the roster despite playing only one full game her senior year.
On the boys side, it could have been very easy for Richmond’s Dominic James to melt down after 7-1 Luke Zeller of Washington ‘ at Notre Dame signee ‘ was voted Mr. Basketball.
Zeller’s half-court prayer won the 3A state championship game and more than likely won him high school hoops’ most coveted award.
But rather than sulk, James, a 5-11 bundle of TNT who can jump out of the gym (and will demonstrate his hoop skills at Marquette), focused on the name on the front of his jersey (Indiana) instead of the name on the back.
Actually, the Indiana All-Stars don’t wear their names on the back of their jerseys. Maybe that was appropriate after the Hoosiers played team-oriented basketball to dominate Kentucky in both games of the 65th annual event.
And it extends further than the state’s top hoops event: there were Lanesville’s baseball ‘Bald Eagles’ players who shaved their heads in honor of a young girl with cancer; the Lanesville softball and Corydon Central basketball teams that exuded so much class during their runs to the state finals this past sports season; or North Harrison’s stoic runner, Ryan Byrne, who was a state runner-up in cross country.
No matter where we go in life, we can all learn a thing or two about class and respect from the youngsters we watch in the athletic arena on a weekly basis.
And Roenick could learn a lot.