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A magic moment captured at the end of the Father’s Day race

Bennett Brumbley and Doc Masser friends across the great divide
Bennett Brumbley, 9, escorts Doc Lee Masser, 81, to the finish line. DAVE FREDERICK PHOTO
June 20, 2017

The Naturals - Bennett Brumbley, 9, from Laurel ran his Father's Day 5K in 22:56. Doc Lee Masser, 81, ran 57:45. Bennett finished his race then went back out on the course and escorted Doc to the finish line. And he does it because he does it, because he gets it, just like Doc always gets it, maybe he is Doc 72 years ago? That was my Father’s Day moment, a cross-generational image of a young boy respecting a tribal elder, a history wrapped around itself. 

Just kidding - I often joke that people sometimes say what they really mean followed by “just kidding.” “Say, do you have a big nose or just a small head? Is that a high collar or do you have a short neck?” “Say what?”  “Just kidding, man, just kidding.” I appreciate a good ribbing in my job as sports reporter, especially when I make a mistake, otherwise how would I know? Approaching me with a serious complaint never ends well for the complainant. Brent Van Scyoc, 51, from Jarrettsville, Md., recently showed up on the race scene and has been knocking down age group 50-54 and overall clydesdale trophies. Brent won the Georgetown Library 5K in 21:47, the Irish Eyes 5K in 21:46, was champion clydesdale in the Father’s Day 5K in 22:38, first in the Blue-Gold 5K in 21:18, first in the Doug Strong 5K in 20:54 and first senior masters clydesdale in the Masser Five Miler in 35:22.  But enough about Brent. Somewhere inside that age group 50-54 and clydesdale domination, I messed up and gave first-place credit to someone else. Brent jokingly brought it to my attention before the Irish Eyes 5K June 17. I wanted to blame it on Nick Roth at the paper, but I did it. Hey, Brent, who is watching Jarrettsville while you’re in seaside Sussex picking up all these trophies? Just kidding!

Instant assessment - During pregame, the experienced writer or coach, even parent, watches the other team warm up - the team they do not know. Fitness, skill, organizational level and whether they appear to know what they are doing. I would argue that I am good at it and seldom wrong. During the recent girls’ lacrosse tournament, before the semifinal game as Ursuline warmed up, my granddaughter Katie came by and said to me, “They don’t look half bad. In fact, they look pretty good.” I agreed. The Raiders, coached by Feffie Barnhill, came out of the gates to lead Cape 4-2, and the game was tied 4-4 at the half. Cape earned their way home for a 10-5 win, but anyone paying attention knew it was going to be a game just by watching the warm-ups.

Snippets - From 6 to 8 p.m., Wednesday, June 28, on the Cape Bermuda grass field will be the first Lacrosse Experience Night to introduce adaptive lacrosse to prospective athletes. This is the first of three Wednesday evening summer sessions before the start of the inaugural season in the fall. Go to atlanticlacrosse.org for contact information. Golf is a young man’s game, which is why there’s a senior tour. Senior golfers explain the sport to me, “It’s not about how far you hit it, it’s more about diminished focus.” The top three ranked players in the world, Dustin Johnson, Rory McIlroy and Jason Day failed to make the cut for the U.S. Open. Winner Brooks Koepka, just 27, earned $2 million with the victory. Talk about pedigree. His great-uncle is former National League MVP Dick Groat, still alive at age 86. Groat was an All-American basketball player at Duke and played a season in the NBA. Groat played shortstop on the World Champion Pirates in 1960 and Cardinals in 1964. Groat later played two seasons for the Phillies in 1965-66 under Manager Gene Mauch. I was at a game and saw Groat throw his bat at the ball on a waste pitch on a hit-and-run, the ball went into fair territory and everyone was safe. Manager Mauch threw a happy conniption in the dugout. Groat was the cool customer you wanted on your team. “Camps for Gramps” is a new idea I have for summertime diversion. I’d like to be a life coach for people who already lived a long life, low impact, a lot of wading and dead man float competitions. Ask any ocean lifeguard how many times they’ve been ready to rescue before gramps rolls over then blows water into the air like a bipolar beluga. Go on now, git! 

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