Seven on Seven lacrosse full speed on half field
Seven on seven - I was at DE Turf Sunday night taking photos of a half-field, seven-on-seven girls’ lacrosse game featuring Vikings Gold versus the Dolphins, a collection of good players out of the Salisbury region. The Gold then played Queen Anne’s in the time it took me to find my car in the parking lot. Players in the game that I watched (Vikings also had Blue and White teams on the pitch) were Gold team members Riley Keen, Lindsay Rambo, Haley Craig, Ally Best, Destiny Kusen, Molly Mendes, Kelly Bragg, Sierra Manifold, Elle Anderson, Lauryn Head, Ella Rishko and Megan Smith. Vikings Gold scored more goals, but the Dolphins team was talented with many fast players. Rishko snapped, showcasing her D1 talents, while Mendez and Bragg were rocking and rolling at both ends of the field. Kusen was goalie for Vikings Gold, who also battled a Queen Anne’s team in the second game.
Mental health - I said throughout my teaching career (or whatever that was) that schools are interactive mental health institutions. It's not what they are charged to do, but they are the best at doing it, mainly because they are staffed by caring people. I have seen the mental health card thrown down during the sports shutdown, not by the athletes but by adults. And although they are not wrong, I might add that this remains a neglected population existing in the shadows and stairwells, the kids often late for class without a hall pass. And honestly, for many, losing a sports season doesn’t rise to the level of a mental health crisis.
Rona refs - I’m not a referee basher or blamer – never have been – and I realize without them there is no game. I honestly never thought about the officials during the athletic shutdown or the call back to fall sports. But recently I read a post from a parent groupie saying they heard an official association may refuse to wear masks, although they are simpatico with vertical zebra stripes. Most official associations have been working hard to attract new and younger people into their profession. The officials are all in the mix, intersecting all the flyways and byways where sweat and spittle are jettisoned into the atmosphere by asymptomatic young and fast people. And they will do their job because without them there is no game. And when one takes the time to point at me and say, “You can’t stand there,” I don’t argue. I just move, although sometimes I mumble.
Hall of Fame - It was Fred funny in 2014 when, after spending 39 years doing sports in Delaware, I was inducted into the Pennsylvania Hall of Fame, Bucks County Chapter. The program was loaded with stellar inductees. I’d have been voted first off the island in a sports “Survivor” program; just use a yellow highlighter and color me out! Basically, none of my Delaware stuff even made the program. Last Sunday, old school Pennsylvania friend Dennis Durkin, Archbishop Ryan and Temple, now in Tennessee and Florida, forwarded me a Legacy.com obituary of Tom Kaczor, 77, a basketball and baseball player, and successful basketball coach. Tom was a member of that 2014 induction class. Kaczor's biography that night centered mostly on his basketball coaching; he was also a great player. But pitching Morrisville to the Little League World Championship, a tournament in which he also hit multiple home runs, never got mentioned. Dick Hart, a high school national record holder in shot put (64-feet-3-inches), was also on that team. Hart played minor league baseball with Milwaukee Braves 1961-65, then walked into Eagles training camp and started at offensive guard 1967-70. Tom Kaczor was quirky and aloof and one of the heroes of my boyhood.
Honestly don’t know - “Dishonestly do know” would be the flip side of that statement. People often ask me a sports question prefaced by, “I’m sure you know,” and I respond, “Honestly, I don’t,” but sometimes I do, but I just figure it’s not my job to blab about secret stuff I learned by keeping my ear to the track in a town where the train no longer runs. So what about middle school sports? Well, each school has to opt in, like plaque psoriasis guy cannonballing into the condo pool, then a schedule gets constructed and officials procured. It gets complicated. Speaking of mental health, you don’t want to work in a middle school where the population is squirrelly because of no sports.
Snippets - “You’ve got to suffer if you want to sing the blues.” – David Bromberg. Phillies players have more hamstring and hip flexor injuries than a hillside nursing home. If you’re a fan who likes getting beaten up, follow every pitch this week for the last seven games of the season. A playoff berth is on the line. Go on now, git!