Young Tony Hazzard achieving and bringing others with him
TT and Tony - Perhaps it was 2010, a Cape JV football game, the waning minutes, Cape up by 30 points. All players had seen the field except TT Hazzard. There was one parent standing by the bench. It was Tony Hazzard. I said to a young coach, “TT hasn’t been in this game.” “He don’t know his plays,” the coach said. “How many plays do you run on defense?” I said. Remember, I’m the sportswriter, not a coach, so why am I even allowed to talk? On Monday, the man who “don’t know his plays” kept his Milford boys’ basketball team undefeated at 10-0 with a 65-58 win over Postlethwait. Straight across the court was his dad, Tony Hazzard, just being Tony. I saw Tony later and he said, “Mr. Fred, if you write up anything on that game, make sure you mention that TT is my son.” Coach Tony “TT” Hazzard and his assistants Jaron Dukes and Jawon Sivels play the roster when they can. Their star player Kashmier Wise had 39 points in the game. Wise has only seen the fourth quarter three times all season for the Baby Bucs. Coach Tony graduated from University of Valley Forge in 2018 with a degree in psychology. “My ultimate goal is to play every player every game,” he said. “Each of those kids has a special talent. When I see my dad across the court, it reminds me of scenes from when I was playing. Back then, we would ice the game at the end and he would let everybody know it was over. I’m coaching now, and it’s still great to see him doing that.” Life lessons learned along the dual highway; there are always choices to make and scripts to flip. Mr. “He Don’t Know His Plays” is now running the best playbook of all, giving all his players opportunities.
Ring ceremony - Josten’s was in the Big House Feb. 4 because Chuck Hudson is an assistant coach for the Cape girls’ basketball team. The 2019 state champion field hockey team was presented with their rings at halftime of the basketball game versus Dover. The girls waited until each had their rings before opening them all at the same time. There is no getting used to winning a championship and getting a ring, and there is no way you can have too many. Each season is its own journey and creates unique memories. Retiring Athletic Director Bob Cilento, who supervised 25 state titles during his 14-year tenure at Cape, was presented with a framed team photo by senior players Lee Wilson, Abby Kane and Anna Stancofski. The photo was taken by Dan Cook. Homey don’t frame no photos.
Spontaneous composition - I was looking down figuring out camera settings for a field hockey ring ceremony at a basketball game when I looked up to see that the entire JV team had freestyled like NFL players after a turnover. They composed their own celebration shot. I snapped a few photos muttering to myself, “This will never work,” except it did, and we all moved on with our lives until we someday meet again.
Don’t spoil the kid - How can you not love Kansas City quarterback Patrick Mahomes? He is an unspoiled and unpolished 24-year-old kid. And that’s all I want to know about him. I don’t care how much he makes or what his girlfriend looks like. You can tell he’s a nice person and not worn out yet by too much glorified attention from a fan base and the media. He is a kid playing a game, and by the way, “How much do you make?” The question is rude and says nothing of your character or worth to society. I hope Patrick doesn’t get overexposed, which even Adobe can’t fix.
Snippets - There are eight wrestling teams in each division that make the state duals. The first-round matchups are at the home of the higher seed Wednesday, Feb. 12. Duals this Saturday, Feb. 8, will go a long way to determine final placement. Sussex Tech at Cape and Salesianum at Sussex Central are set for Saturday, while Milford wrestles at Smyrna Friday, Feb. 7. The Henlopen Conference Swim Championships are Saturday, Feb. 8, at Sussex Academy. The Beacon versus Mariner basketball doubleheader at the Cape Big House is Monday, Feb. 10. The girls open play at 5:45 p.m., with the boys’ game to follow. The Indian River School District referendum is Thursday, Feb. 13. The Yes people who are out there hard all year round need to swamp the polls. I have no dog in this fight, other than being a teacher, coach and kid advocate with his own column the last 38 years. Go on now, git!