Living and running down a dream
Running down a dream - I lugged my big camera rig to DE Turf Saturday morning to watch a girls’ lacrosse tournament. The Eastern Shore Lacrosse Club had five teams in the Victory Fall Classic. Each team was guaranteed three games and perhaps a championship game. There were five age divisions by year of graduation and some teams were combinations like 2020-21 and 2024-25. Pretty confusing even if you care, but the 2022 ESLC Pirates and 2024 ESLC Pirates won championships. Legacy Lax 2020-21 and Belles Lax 2023 also won titles. Local Saltwater teams out of Ocean City and Berlin, Md., also had club teams represented. Mostly what these athletes chase are ground balls. I can’t say who is running down the dream of a college scholarship at a Division I school. Maybe they are just happy to be part of a team playing a fun sport. The cost per team (five teams ESLC) in a one-day tournament is $1,500 per team. Players pay about $1,000 per year to play; that includes fall and early summer.
Parents as children - When parents play like children, their kids get wet. Sunday morning at the Sea Witch 5K, the weather was warm and wet, then it started raining dogs and dinosaurs. To use a Sussex County colloquialism, T-Rex got his head handed to him by his own self. One young boy running with his smiling mother crossed into the finish chute and lamented, “I don’t like this.” But a no-talking toddler in a stroller without head cover completed a mommy-propelled 5K. The rain pelting the ground sounded like a babbling brook, and the kid was babbling back and loving every second of his water park ride. The detour cone women were great and the Incredible Hulk looked so real he wasn’t credible.
Pratfalls and face plants - On Friday morning at 5 a.m. with a cup of coffee in my left hand and a leashed dog in my right, I tripped over a cord attached to an air pump I’ve never used and was pitched forward from a kitchen doorway onto a concrete garage floor. I landed the Fred Plane like Captain Sully in the Hudson River. Broke the fall with elbows and one kneecap. My wife Susan said: “Let me get you some ice. Your knee is swollen.” I told her I didn’t believe in ice, all it did was make your skin cold. Later Friday, I was walking the cardiac canine Darby Dog with a cane. And then the cane collapsed – the piece of junk. I missed the Friday night football game because I couldn’t shuffle sideways. On Saturday night, I scratched my face in bed while searching for my cellphone to check the time. And then Sunday while trying to shoot a race in the rain, I broke the plastic piece of the umbrella you use to close it, so I stuck the top in the dirt, except then the handle broke off. People around me said, “Stop before you hurt yourself – again.” I can’t wait to emcee my next banquet; I’m sure something outrageous is going to happen.
Hydration and certification - Wrestlers must certify at a weight before the season, passing a height/weight and hydration test – they can’t go below 7 percent body fat. Then they can lose only 1.5 percent of their weight a week to reach desired weight. The working premise is the same as it ever was: go light and stay strong. Otherwise, you run into bigger people who dropped down to find your too-fat-for-prime-time self. I still don’t understand how a digital scale measures your BMI by calculating the fat in your feet. Too much biofeedback will make you a cyberchondriac; just ask any butterball turkey.
Snippets - Lucy Siranides, Cape senior soccer goalie, reinjured her surgically repaired ACL and will miss her senior season. Lizzie Frederick (Cape), a senior lacrosse player at Temple University, sat out the fall season with an injured foot. Lola Messick, a senior, went to the manager side of the street this hockey season recovering from ankle surgery. Lola may possibly miss lacrosse season as well. Ben Ashby, Cape football and track star who tore his ACL his senior season, has given up his quest to play football at Salisbury University. The road back is long and tough enough without putting your leg in jeopardy on the football field. The University of Delaware, playing before an announced crowd of 15,000 (always less) lost to Richmond Saturday 35-25. Delaware is 4-4 with games remaining against Towson, Albany, Stony Brook and Villanova. All those games are even money. The Blue Hens could win or lose them all, or split down the middle. I still call it Division I-AA. Delaware enhanced its schedule by bringing in North Dakota State and Penn while playing at Pitt and Elon. It’s just hard to say where the program is going, but mostly it’s going without students going to games. Cape football (2-6) has Friday night road games remaining at Smyrna and Sussex Tech. The Ravens are a very good 3-5 team with games remaining versus Caesar Rodney and Cape. Sussex County Cross Country Championships are Tuesday afternoon at Sussex Academy. That’s my Luigi’s Wheelhouse. Austin Elliott, grandson of Luigi’s Wheelhouse (you have to be local), pitched for North Carolina on a recent team trip to the Dominican Republic. Go on now, git!