Public school sports power is downstate

Private upstate schools dominate state championships
Jazmine Reeves from Caesar Rodney and Virginia Tech, a soccer first-team All-American, was drafted by the Boston Breakers Jan. 17. BY HOKIESPORTS.COM
January 24, 2014

Balance of power - Looking back on 2013, I count 30 state championships with some sports broken into two divisions. I break schools into three categories: the public, private and countywide vocational-technical schools. I list Wilmington Charter as a private school because it is selective and not an all-inclusive public school. The private schools accounted for 18 of the 30 state championships awarded, with Salesianum, a boys' school, winning five including cross country, lacrosse, soccer, swimming and football. Padua, a girls' school, also won five including cross country, indoor track, soccer, volleyball and outdoor track. Throw in Saint Mark’s baseball and Saint Elizabeth’s basketball, and that’s 12 for the Catholics, proving my theory that making the sign of the cross during competition results in more championships. Public schools won nine state titles, with CR winning boys' indoor and outdoor track and golf, Smyrna girls' outdoor track and wrestling, Cape field hockey and girls' lacrosse, Laurel softball, and Indian River soccer. No upstate public school won a state title in any sport; that is why they are so hard to schedule for downstate schools. Howard boys' basketball, Hodgson football and Saint Georges wrestling are tech schools that won state titles. Some public school coaches have argued that the private schools should have their own division for state tournaments because “they recruit,” but if that happens, who is left to beat that’s any good?

Risk reward - Keep playing sports, and someday as a player or coach, maybe parent or grandparent, you will be getting kicked in the face and getting your teeth knocked out. Results of games don’t come down to one play unless it’s at the very end, and you can win it or lose it. You name the sport, and I’ve seen it happen. Sure, there are many minutes to win or lose a game - keep telling yourself that - but closeout time is an entirely different animal. Just be ready to deal when it happens; we all have examples, you don’t need mine.

Punter - Arizona Cardinals punter Dave Zastudil is the nephew of Club Fitness trainer Dave Kergaard. David is so athletic, the Ravens toyed with making him the third quarterback (emergency). Zastudil is left-footed, punted for the Ohio Bobcats and was drafted by Baltimore in the third round 12 years ago. He played four years with the Ravens, five with the Browns and the last three with the Cardinals, and at 35 years old just signed another two-year contract with the Cardinals. Dave averaged 45 yards a punt the last two seasons and made more money than Russell Wilson. I watched him work out once at the old Gold’s Gym and was impressed by his flexibility and core body strength.

Snippets - When is some innovator going to build a low-riding, four-wheel-drive school bus that carries its own snowplow and a salt spreader on the back? Teams are missing too many practices. You can miss English class; it’s not like you’re going to forget how to speak. But we talking about practice, man. You can get out of shape in three days easily; I know because I’ve done it three days at a time for a long time.

Jazmine Reeves of Virginia Tech and Caesar Rodney was selected by the Boston Breakers of the National Women’s Soccer League in the third round Jan. 17. Reeves was a first-team All-American who led the Hokies to the final four.

Trent Batson is now a senior at Virginia Wesleyan, playing for the 12-4 and 18th-ranked Marlins, a Division III team. Batson is among the team leaders in rebounds and blocks, and is scheduled to graduate on time. Black Widow suicide bombers creeping about at Winter Olympics in Russia? Seriously? Talk about things going downhill. Go on now, git!

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