Beta babes run races and put all doubts behind them

December 12, 2012

Fast friends - Georgette O’Cone and Betty Ridenour are fast friends and medical marvels, both tough as NFL linebackers. They run races - lots of them - to put all doubts behind them. If males can be alpha dogs, these women are beta babes. Betty has gone from sideline photographer to cancer survivor who freely tells her story and has inspired other women to be brave, get examined, have genetic testing where appropriate and ramp up personal enthusiasm for their own health. Georgette is a true cardiac kid, perhaps the Gloria Estefan of runners, “the rhythm is gonna get you.” She passed out before the Dogfish but at least she got an out-of- pocket, no-expense-paid three grand ride to Beebe. Both Betty and Georgette ran and completed the Rehoboth Half Marathon Saturday, the 50th race of the season for each of them. “That’s my first race with a pacemaker," Georgette said after her 2 hours and 48 minutes of running. Betty was right behind at 2:49, arms raised and smiling - she always finishes with a smile. Note: I’m asking Beebe to “waive that fee” because a person slightly dazed sitting on a curb at 7:30 a.m can’t exactly argue “No thanks, I'll jog there. How far is it and do I get a T-shirt?”

Lax lady - Lauren Mazzotta Pearce was the first woman to play lacrosse at Cape, and that was on the boys' team, and she is still not 30 years old. Lauren ran the Rehoboth Marathon Dec. 8, and I snapped her picture twice but she didn’t see or recognize me, no doubt too deeply inside the zone of competition. Lauren ran a 3:44, not too shabby. Lauren led a women’s Cape JV lacrosse into a varsity schedule back in 2002, and I found a story where the team had beaten a varsity Tatnall team 6-5 behind a pair of goals from Mazzotta and freshman Sam Coveleski and single goals from Megan Fullmer and Jordan Lorah. Jordan Bryan and Shukri Gibbs excelled on defense while Sarah White had 10 saves in the game. Cape followed that with a 13-4 win over CR in which Mazzotta had five goals. Lauren and Megan were also members of coach Ruth Skoglund's 2000 Cape field hockey squad which lost 2-1 in the state finals to Tower Hill. I am wired to never forget high school athletes. Just can’t help myself, Sugar Pie Honey Bunch.

Fred Pop permission - I asked my granddaughter Anna’s permission before accepting a request from the Cape boosters to emcee the field hockey team's state championship banquet. Imagine the horror of most teen athletes upon looking up and seeing their grandfather at the podium of a team banquet. But Anna gave me a ringing endorsement: “Sure, go ahead, I don’t care.” And so last Sunday I rocked the microphone one more time, one more opportunity to be retired forever. But the thing is, the Cape crowd is cool, they get it, they know me and I know them. Banquet was great, by the way, several poignant moments but not too lovey-dovey. I remember back when I coached track all booster club members were on probation.

Little twerp - Why is it that the adjective "little" is the most frequent adjective to precede the noun "twerp."  You never read: “Bobby was a big old burly muscular twerp."  The last two Sunday nights, sportscaster Bob Costas became social editorialist, talking about “no guns no shootings” and “no cars no drunk drivers” and the "Little Twerp" card is now pasted on his forehead like the two of clubs in a game of Indian Poker.  Costas had entered the uncool zone where little twerps chirp in silence. I will never be a little twerp; at most I will be a little too much.

Happy Andy - It was one play-one win-one spontaneous gesture of happiness for Andy Reid. Nick Foles, Napoleon Dynamite in a helmet, hit a sliding Jeremy Macklin with a game-winning touchdown over Tampa Bay as a million blue-collar guys back in Philly released the death grip on their frosted beer mugs and signaled touchdown. They may have been signaling Andy’s return as well; it could be argued the retooling of this troop may be the best coaching he’s ever done.

Snippets - The Cape basketball girls, 0-2, play at 2-0 Indian River at 6:15 p.m., Tuesday, Dec. 11. The River is coached by John and Jack Frye (now I can’t get the song “Frye me a River” out of my head). The Indians were 15-5 last year and beat Wilmington Friends in the first round of the state tournament. Hey, Steeler Nation, want to trade head coaches? Go on now, git!






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