Well it’s play-off season with football and basketball on the minds of sports fans everywhere. Stories of touchdowns and baskets made or missed are swapped from the local bar, to work break rooms to media outlets everywhere.
So in the spirit of the season, but with an inspirational twist, comes the resurfacing of some sports stories that were well-known in their day, and have a timeless message about sportsmanship.
The first one is from right here in my home territory of Washington State about a high-school football player with named Ike Ditzenberger ,who pushed through the challenge of Down syndrome in a game played for Snohomish High School against Lake Stevens High School. With a shut-out game in Lake Stevens favor ahead of them, coaching staff and players on both teams ran a touchdown play with Ike that shows true value of the human spirit, and may even leave you a little misty-eyed. Not one to re-invent the wheel, I’ve included with the video link, a wonderful and very informational article written back in the day by Seattle Times columnist Steve Kelly about the story, and also includes an interview video.
There is also a link below for the story of Ryan Ostrowski. A very determined boy with Autism and Cerebral Palsy, Ryan’s dream of playing football led him to making a touchdown for his brothers High School football team the Macomb Mustangs.
Rounding out this trio, is a video link for two rival basketball teams that for a moment, put score aside and allowed an injured star to start his last senior game, even though he couldn’t finish it playing to win.
In this season of rivals and rivalry, may you enjoy these few stories of sportsmanship where players truly embraced their competition.
Nadia Riell is the author of Inspiring Childhood, Inspiring Life-Perspectives on Love, Encouragement and Reaching Potential.
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Photo Credit: Michale Heiman / Getty Images
Video Credit: Game Time Video Production