Friday, February 28, 2020

 

            


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Seven Receive “Making A Difference” Awards At AHSAA 2018 Coaches’ Awards Banquet

MONTGOMERY – Seven individuals were recognized Friday night at the AHSAA’s 22st annual Championship Coaches’ Awards Banquet as recipients of the prestigious “Making A Difference” Award as the 2018 AHSAA Summer Conference concluded at the Montgomery Renaissance Hotel and Convention Center.
    The week-long conference, which attracted approximately 5,000 administrators, coaches and other support personnel from AHSAA member schools to Montgomery, was hosted by the Alabama High School Athletic Directors & Coaches Association (AHSADCA). It included 10 North-South all-star competitions during the week – for the sports of baseball, softball, boys’ and girls’ soccer, boys’ and girls’ basketball, boys’ and girls’ cross country, volleyball and football. The North beat the South 27-14 in the 59th playing of the North-South football all-star game to close out all-star play Thursday night.
    Governor Kay Ivey was the keynote speaker at Friday’s awards banquet recognized a total of 112 state championship coaches who led teams to state titles in the AHSAA’s championship programs in 2017-18 as well as honoring several others for outstanding service or accomplishment.  Among them was Devin Hind of Hoover High School. Hind led the Bucs to a sweep of the AHSAA Class 7A indoor and outdoor boys’ and girls’ state track and field championships. As a result, national track and field website Dyestat named Hoover the National Duals Track and Field Champs for 2018 – using best times and performances from the student-athletes during the season and matching the Bucs against other state champions from across the nation in a computerized playoff. The match-play competition concluded with Hoover beating California prep track powerhouse Great Oak High School of Temecula (CA) 69.3 – 66.7 in the dual match finals. Dyestat has had its hypothetical match-play championships for three years – with Auburn High School winning the first virtual competition National crown in 2016.
   The highlight of Friday’s banquet was the “Making A Difference” Award, however, now in its eighth year. One AHSAA member school coach or administrator was honored in each classification for their contributions to their schools and communities that help change lives in daily in a positive way.
    The recipients were: principal Jack Hayes, Brilliant High School (1A); Head football coach and athletic director JimBob Striplin, Geneva County High School (2A); athletic director Anthony McCall, Montgomery Academy (3A); girls’ basketball and volleyball coach Frances Dunn, Greensboro (4A); track and cross country coach Stanley Johnson, Lawrence County (5A); athletic director and volleyball coach Pam Robinson, Benjamin Russell (6A); principal Clem Richardson, Baker High School (7A).
  
Several other special awards were presented including AHSADCA Athletic Director of the Year presented to Kim Kiel of Pelham High School. The ADSADCA also presented the Past President’s Award was presented to Kiel.
     Veteran Huntsville city councilman and AHSAA football official Mark Russell and Carver-Montgomery band director and music teacher LaFrancis Davis were also recognized at NFHS Section 3 “Spirit of Sport” and “Heart of the Arts” Award recipients for 2018. Russell suffered a heart attack in Madison Academy’s opening game of the 2017 prep football season and had no heartbeat for more than eight minutes, but thanks to the quick thinking of a nurse, who was in the sidelines as the MA school photographer, he survived the trauma. Just over three months later, he officiated in the Super 7 Class 7A state championship game at Bryant-Denny in Tuscaloosa.
     Davis, a multi-sport standout athlete at Slocomb high school, turned down college football for his true passion – music. He got his degree from Alabama A&M, then went into the Army where he reached the rank of Lieutenant Colonel before leaving the military to become a band director, first in his home Geneva County where he embarked on a career of rebuilding struggling band programs. He took over a Carver program that had just 60 members, now marches with more than 150 and has developed a program at a feeder middle school that is almost 100 strong.
     He marched and performed trumpet solos at halftime in high school and also rushed for over 1,400 yards. He has encouraged students in his band to play sports and currently has nine who are playing various sports from football and basketball to softball and volleyball.
NFHS Section 3 Coaches of the Year: Four AHSAA coaches were named 2017 NFHS Section 3 Coaches of the Year, including: Richard Carter, Lanett (boys’ basketball); Thomas Esslinger, Homewood (girls’ indoor track & field); Derrick Gargis, Muscle Shoals (boys’ golf); and Jimmy Johnson III, Opelika (boys’ outdoor track & field).
NFHS State Coaches of the Year: Twenty-one outstanding AHSAA coaches were selected 2017 NFHS state coach of the year in their respective sports: Zachary Blume, Southside-Gadsden (girls’ bowling); Richard Carter, Lanett (boys’ basketball); Thomas Esslinger, Homewood (outdoor track); Cheryl Flores, McGill-Toolen Catholic (girls’ soccer); Derrick Gargis, Muscle Shoals (boys’ golf); Donna Garner, Florence (boys’ tennis); Chris Heaps, Russellville (baseball); Matt Hicks, Oxford (wrestling); Stephen Hobbs, Spain Park (boys’ country); Kyle Justice, Decatur (girls’ tennis); Tyler Kerns, St. Paul’s Episcopal (boys’ swimming); Josh Niblett, Hoover (football); Dan Norton, Auburn (boys’ cross country); Al Rauls, Buckhorn (softball); Barbara Roy, Locust Fork (girls’ basketball); Rik Tozzi, Indian Springs (boys’ soccer); Roger von Jouanne, Westminster Christian (girls’ swimming); Kayla Woodard, Addison (volleyball).
Children Scholarship Recipients: Ten students, each a child of an AHSADCA member coach or administrator, also received the AHSADCA’s Coaches’ Children Scholarships. They were:
District 1: Willie James Taylor, Jackson HS (son of Coach Tamiko Taylor)
District 2: Courtney Powell, Georgiana HS (daughter of Coach Ezell Powell)
District 3: Elijah Jones, Prattville Christian (son of Coach Leonard Jones)
District 4: Casey Baynes, Tallassee HS (son of Coach Mark Baynes)
District 5: Gracyn LeSueur, Pelham HS (daughter of Coach Kevin LeSueur)
District 6: Riley Austin, Spring Garden HS (son of Coaches Dana and Ricky Austin)
District 6: Anna Bryant, Pleasant Valley HS (daughter of Coaches Dana and David Bryant)
District 7: Tucker Brown, Wilson HS (son of Coach Scott Brown)
District 8: Phillip DesRosier, Grissom HS (son of Cach Alicia Wright DesRosier)
District 8: Shelby Madison Brothers, Geraldine HS (daughter of Coach Cristie Brothers)
Willie James Taylor, Jackson HS (son of Coach Tamiko Taylor)

AHSAA Mourns Death of Official Stewart Stephenson

 MONTGOMERY – The Alabama High School Athletic Association was saddened to learn of the death of long-time AHSAA contest official Stewart Stephenson of Decatur.
    “We pray God will sustain the Stephenson family in their time of need,” said AHSAA Executive Director Steve Savarese.
      Visitation will be Tuesday, July 17 from 3:30 to 6 p.m., at the Church of Stone River, in Decatur. A memorial service will immediately follow.
        In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Church of Stone River or the Committee on Church Cooperation.


AHSAA Mourns Death of Amanda Thrasher

 MONTGOMERY – The Alabama High School Athletic Association was saddened to learn of the death of Amanda Kaye Haynes Thrasher, 49, the wife of AHSAA District Softball Director Keith, coach and teacher Keith Thrasher. She died Saturday, July 14, at her home.
    “Our prayers go out to Keith and the Thrasher family,” said AHSAA Executive Director Steve Savarese, “and pray God will sustain them in their time of need.”
    Visitation will be Monday, July 16, at St. John’s Evangelical Protestant Church in Cullman from 6 to 8 p.m. Her service will be Tuesday, July 17, at 10 a.m., at St. John’s Evangelical Protestant Church, Rev. John Richter will officiate. Burial will be at Bowman’s Chapel Cemetery.
Cullman Heritage Funeral Home is directing.

Vestavia Hills Coach Buddy Anderson Inducted into NFHS National Hall of Fame

     CHICAGO, IL – Coach Dovey “Buddy” Anderson, the winningest high school football coach in Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA) state history, was inducted into the National Federation of State High School Association (NFHS) Hall of Fame Monday night a banquet at the Chicago Marriott Downtown Hotel that closed the 99th Summer Meeting.
    Anderson, who is beginning his 41st season as head football coach at Vestavia Hills in August, became the 12th individuals from  Alabama be enshrined in the nation’s National Hall of Fame.  He was enshrined  along with 11 others from across the U.S., including track athlete Dick Fosbury (Oregon); former Nebraska head football coach Tom Osborne (athlete); former WNBA and Stanford basketball star Nicole Powell (Arizona), distance runner Carrie Tollefson (Minnesota); soccer coach Miller Bugliari (New Jersey); swimming coach Jeff Meister (Hawaii); basketball coach William O’Neil (Vermont); contest official Roger “Smokey” Barr (Iowa); retired Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association Executive Director Richard Neal; and choral coach William Zurkey (Ohio).
     Anderson’s wife Linda, their children and grandchildren where among a large contingent on hand Monday night for the induction. He has compiled a 329-146 overall head-coaching record in 40 seasons at Vestavia Hills winning the Class 4A state title in 1980 and the Class 6A state championship going 15-0 in 1997. His teams have advanced to the state playoffs 30 times with a 47-28 playoff mark and have won nine or more games 22 times in the AHSAA’s large-school class. Anderson’s father Dovey Anderson was 182-81-5 as a prep head football coach in 31 seasons, all at Thomasville.
Both dad and son are in the AHSAA Sports Hall of Fame and won 511 football games between them, most in state history. Both attended Samford University (dad when the school was Howard College) and Dovey, Sr., competed
in the first game ever played at Legion Field in 1927.
     Buddy was hired as an assistant coach at Vestavia in 1972 and was elevated to head coach in 1978.
     “Buddy Anderson is a man of faith and character who has been an important mentor to many others along the way,” said AHSAA Executive Director Steve Savarese. “He is a shining example of the kind of positive impact coaches have on the lives of the student-athletes they serve.”
     Anderson, who received the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame’s “Frank ‘Pig’ House Award in 2014 and the Fellowship of Christian Athletes’ Herman L. “Bubba” Scott Award in 2016, was humbled by the Monday night’s induction.
      “I was very fortunate to grow up in a coach’s home,” he said. “My father was a high school a high school football coach for 31 years. I saw the relationship my dad had with his players, his fellow coaches and teachers. I just went to my own 50th high school reunion and picked right up where I left off with my classmates and those I played sports with. Seeing them, all now in their sixties, and seeing the kind of men they grew unto reminded me of the coaches I worked with (at Vestavia Hills), most of them for more than 30 years and the many players I have had the opportunity to coach. It also reiterated that we are in the relationship business.”
 Anderson, the only coach in AHSAA history to win 300 games at one school, is the second AHSAA football coach from the state to be enshrined in the National High School Hall of Fame. Glenn Daniel, who was the AHSAA’s first 300-game winner (at Pine Hill and Luverne), was inducted in 1999. Track coach Jim Tate of St. Paul’s Episcopal in Mobile, was the last coach from Alabama to be enshrined (2013).  Basketball coach Mickey “Guy” O’Brien, a Dadeville native who coached at Geraldine and Scottsboro, was inducted in 1992.
    Alabamians currently in the NFHS HOF include:

ALABAMIANS IN THE NFHS NATIONAL HALL OF FAME
Year    Name                                      High School                                       College
Administrators
1987: Cliff Harper                              Moore Academy (Pineapple)                  Birmingham-Southern
1990: Herman L. “Bubba” Scott        Autauga County (Prattville)                   Troy State
2011: Dan Washburn                          LaFayette                                            Chattanooga

Coaches
1992: Mickey “Guy” O’Brien            Tallapoosa County (Dadeville)     Auburn                        1999: Glenn Daniel                           A.A. Parrish (Selma)                          Livingston

2013: James “Jim” Tate                      UMS (Mobile)                                     Citadel
2018: Dovey “Buddy” Anderson       Thomasville                                        Samford

Athletes
1989: Bart Starr (Athlete)                   Sidney Lanier (Montgomery)             Alabama         
2012: Pat Sullivan (Athlete)               John Carroll (Birmingham)             Auburn

2014: Ozzie Newsome (Athlete)        Colbert County (Leighton)                   Alabama
Officials
1988: Dan Gaylord                             Central (Phillips, B’ham)                        Howard College
2007: Sam Short                                 West End (B’ham)                                  Western Kentucky
 


AHSAA Soccer Official Joe Manjone Receives NFHS Citation for Officiating

CHICAGO, IL – Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA) soccer official Joe Manjone, a veteran of more than 50 years of service to the sport worldwide, was honored Sunday at the National Federation of State High School Association (NFHS) 99th Summer Meeting as the 2018 Citation Award recipient Officiating.
    Manjone was on hand at the luncheon held at the Chicago Downtown Hyatt Hotel to receive the award presented annually to only one contest official nationally. The NFHS also presented eight Citations, one in each of the NFHS’s eight sections, to individuals who made contributions to the NFHS, state high school associations, coaching, officiating and performance arts.
     Vestavia Hills High School football coach Buddy Anderson will also be inducted Monday night into the National High School Sports Hall of Fame as the NFHS Summer Meeting concludes. Anderson was on hand at the Hall of Fame press conference Sunday afternoon.
    Manjone, who began officiating soccer as a teenager, has been involved in the sport as an official and administrator for more than 50 years.  His influence in the sport has been has been far reaching – spanning more the nation and two continents.
          In Alabama, his service stretches over more than 30 years. The AHSAA Soccer Director and former National Federation of State High Schools Association (NFHS) Soccer Rules Committee Chair has served the AHSAA in numerous soccer roles from officiating to rules interpreter.
        “Not only has Joe always been an outstanding official, officiating other sports besides soccer, but also he has been a dedicated professional and a true credit to this Association,” said AHSAA Executive Director Steve Savarese.
        Manjone ’s contributions have not gone unnoticed. He was recently named the recipient of the NFHS’s prestigious Citation for Officials for 2017, which is presented annually to only one contest official nationwide.
          “Among Joe’s prestigious accomplishments is the AHSAA Distinguished Service Award for service as an official,” Savarese said. “His greatest contribution has been his outstanding leadership exemplified to officials statewide while maintaining the relevance of high school athletics. He is a great ambassador for this Association and the entire Alabama high school sports community.”

          A native of Hazelton, Pennsylvania, Manjone attended Black Creek Township High School, graduating in 1959.

He attended Penn State University, graduating in 1963 with a bachelor’s degree. He later earned additional education degrees from the University of Georgia and Penn State. He was inducted into the NISOA Hall of Fame in 2013 and the Alabama High School Sports Hall of Fame earlier this year.
        Manjone is the seventh AHSAA representative to receive the NFHS Citation and the third contest official. Other include:

1992 – Herman L. “Bubba” Scott (NFHS Award of Merit)*

2000 – Ken Blankenship (NFHS Coach Citation)

2006 – Greg Brewer (NFHS State Association Citation)
2010 – Houston Young (NFHS Officials Citation)

2011 – Alan Mitchell (NFHS State Association Citation)
2014 – Jeff Hilyer (NFHS Officials Citation)

2015 – Wanda Gilliland (NFHS State Association Citation)
2016 – Richard Robertson (NFHS Coach Citation)
2018 – Joe Mangone (NFHS Officials Citation)
*-This special award is presented to special individuals who major a lasting impact on the NFHS and all its member schools. Recipients have included former President Gerald R. Ford, former Major League Baseball Commissioner Bowie Kuhn, former NCAA Executive Directors Walter Byars and Myles Brand. This award is not presented annually.


U.S. District Court Denies St. Paul’s Episcopal School’s Injunction Request

    Today, Wednesday, June 27,  the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Alabama entered an order denying St. Paul’s Episcopal School’s request for a preliminary injunction to set aside the classification and sports team alignment of member private schools using the competitive balance formula and 1.35 multiplier approved by the Central Board of Control last November.
    Legal counsel for St. Paul’s Episcopal School filed a lawsuit and a request for preliminary injunction in the U.S. District Court in Mobile on May 24, and AHSAA legal counsel responded quickly filing a response asking the court to deny the preliminary injunction. The AHSAA’s legal counsel also filed a motion last week to dismiss the case completely.
     The Court announced it will enter a briefing schedule on defendants’ Motion to Dismiss forthwith.
     “We are pleased to have this initial phase of the lawsuit resolved,” Savarese said.  “We are still in litigation with this lawsuit; therefore, the AHSAA will have no other comment at this time.” 

AHSAA Mourns Death of Former Brantley Student Alexis Wilcox

    MONTGOMERY – The Alabama High School Athletic Association is saddened to learn of the death of former Brantley High School student-athlete Alexis “Alex” Wilcox, 18. She passed away at home on Monday, June 25, after an extended illness.

    Miss Wilcox, the recipient of the 2017 Class 1A Bryant-Jordan Student Achievement Award, was an outstanding softball, volleyball and basketball player in high school who just completed her freshman softball season at Mississippi State University. She inspired young and old alike with her faith and courage as she raised awareness of ovarian cancer while battling the disease.
     A visitation will be held at Brantley High School’s gymnasium Wednesday, June 27, from 6 to 9 p.m. A memorial service will be held at the gymnasium on Thursday, June 28, at 2 p.m., with interment to follow in Dozier Cemetery. Turner’s Funeral Home of Luverne is directing.  Miss Wilcox was also a lifelong member of Brantley United Methodist Church.
    Her former teammates and coaches from Brantley High School and Mississippi State University will serve as honorary pallbearers. The family requests that any memorial donations be made to either The Alex Strong Memorial Scholarship Fund, ℅ of Brantley Bank & Trust, P. O. Box 25, Brantley, AL, 36009, or to Geaux Teal, P.O. Box 82778, Baton Rouge, Louisiana, 70884.


NFHS Network to Stream Summer Meeting Events

INDIANAPOLIS, IN (June 21, 2018) — The National High School Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on July 2 and Hall of Fame Press Conference on July 1 are among several events at the 2018 Summer Meeting of the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) in Chicago that will be streamed live on the NFHS Network. All Summer Meeting events can be accessed on the NFHS Network at no cost.

The Hall of Fame Press Conference will be held at 1:45 p.m. CDT (2:45 p.m. Eastern time) on Sunday, July 1, at the Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile in Chicago, Illinois, followed by the 36th annual induction ceremony at 6 p.m. CDT (7 p.m. Eastern time) on Monday, July 2.

The Hall of Fame Press Conference will be available at no cost on the NFHS Network at http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/nfhs/evt885743f5e9 and the Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony can be accessed at http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/nfhs/evt7f107de5cd .

All 12 inductees will be on hand at the press conference and induction ceremony, including Vestavia Hills High School’s Buddy Anderson, the winningest high school football coach in AHSAA state history.

In addition, four other events during the June 28-July 2 NFHS Summer Meeting will be streamed live on the NFHS Network. The “We Are High School” Opening Ceremony at 3:00 p.m. June 29 can be accessed at http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/nfhs/evtfb164fb09f, followed by the First General Session (http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/nfhs/evtedfb7a7e16) at 4:15 p.m.

At the Opening Ceremony, Marissa Walker of Waterford (Connecticut) High School will receive the National High School Spirit of Sport Award, and Cecelia Egan of Riverside St. Mary Academy-Bay View (Rhode Island) will receive the National High School Heart of the Arts Award.

Other NFHS Summer Meeting events available on the NFHS Network are the Second General Session at 9 a.m. June 30 (http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/nfhs/evtbd8da74ebb) and the Awards Luncheon at 12 p.m. July 1 (http://www.nfhsnetwork.com/events/nfhs/evt105b20b485).  

The Awards Luncheon will feature the presentation of NFHS Citations to 12 individuals, including AHSAA Soccer official Joe Manjone, who will receive the NFHS Officials Association Citation.  

Information on all NFHS Summer Meeting activities, the Hall of Fame Press Conference and the Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony is contained in the accompanying releases.


Anderson to be Inducted into National High School Sports Hall of Fame at 99th Annual NFHS Summer Meeting in Chicago

INDIANAPOLIS, IN (June 20, 2018) — The 99th annual National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS) Summer Meeting will be held June 28-July 2 at the Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile in Chicago, Illinois. The NFHS is the national leadership organization for high school athletic and performing arts activities and is composed of state high school associations in the 50 states plus the District of Columbia.

More than 800 individuals are expected to attend the Summer Meeting, including staff members and board members from the 51-member associations.

The 36th annual induction ceremony of the National High School Hall of Fame and discussion of several key issues affecting high school sports and performing arts highlight this year’s agenda.  The NFHS Network will be live-streaming the Hall of Fame press conference and Hall of Fame banquet ceremonies. For more information, check for details at www.nfhsnetwork.com.

Twelve individuals will be inducted into the National High School Hall of Fame, including Alabama’s own Buddy Anderson, Nebraska’s Tom Osborne and Oregon’s Dick Fosbury.        Anderson is the AHSAA’s winningest football coach in Alabama history with a 329-146 record over the past 40 years at Vestavia Hills High School. Anderson was also a standout tight end at Thomasville High School and was played on the offensive line at Samford University. He becomes the 12th individual to be inducted into the National High School Hall of Fame from Alabama. The others include: former AHSAA Executive Directors Cliff Harper (1987); Herman L. “Bubba” Scott (1990); and Dan Washburn (2011); basketball coach Wallace “Mickey Guy” O’Brien (1992); football coach Glenn Daniel (1999); track and cross country coach Jim Tate (2013); athletes Bart Starr (1989); Pat Sullivan (2012); and Ozzie Newsome (2014); and contest officials Dan Gaylord (1988); and Sam Short (2007). 
          In addition, AHSAA Soccer Rules interpreter and state Other Citation recipients are Joe Manjone of Alabama (NFHS Officials Association), Scott Evans of New Mexico (NFHS Coaches Association), Alan Greiner of Iowa (NFHS Music Association) and Tara Tate of Illinois (NFHS Speech/Debate/Theatre Association).  Manjone, who has spent more than 50 years in sports officiating, has served as AHSAA State Rules Interpreter and  AHSAA Championship Officials Coordinator since 1991 and has been an NFHS Soccer Rules Committee member beginning in 2000. He has served as rules committee chairman and is the current NFHS rules consultant and interpreter. In 2012 he received the NFHS Sports Officials Association Contributor of the Year Award.

Osborne was a three-sport standout (football, basketball, track and field) at Hastings (Nebraska) High School in the early 1950s before becoming one of the most successful coaches in college football history. Fosbury developed the upside-down, back-layout leap known as the Fosbury Flop at Medford (Oregon) High School and later perfected it by winning the gold medal at the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City.

Other former high school athletes in the 2018 class are Nicole Powell, one of Arizona’s top all-time girls basketball players during her days at Mountain Pointe High School in Phoenix who later excelled at Stanford University and in the WNBA, and Carrie Tollefson, who won five state cross country championships and eight individual track titles at Dawson-Boyd High School in Dawson, Minnesota, before winning individual and team NCAA titles while competing at Villanova University and qualifying for the 2004 U.S. Olympic team.

Four other outstanding coaches will be inducted with Anderson in the 2018 class, including Miller Bugliari, No. 2 nationally in boys soccer coaching victories with a 850-116-75 record in 58 years at The Pingry School in Basking Ridge, New Jersey, and Dorothy Gaters, the Illinois state leader with 1,106 career victories in 42 years as girls basketball coach at John Marshall High School in Chicago who won her ninth Illinois High School Association state title earlier this year.

Other coaches who will be honored this year are Jeff Meister, girls and boys swimming coach at Punahou School in Honolulu, Hawaii, who has led his teams to a combined 34 Hawaii High School Athletic Association state championships; and Bill O’Neil, who retired last year after winning almost 1,300 games as the boys ice hockey, girls soccer and girls softball coach at Essex High School in Essex Junction, Vermont.

The other three members of the 2018 class are Roger Barr, who retired in 2015 after a 43-year career in high school officiating in Iowa, including the final 13 years as director of officials for the Iowa High School Athletic Association; Dick Neal, who retired in 2013 after a 34-year career as executive director of the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association; and Bill Zurkey, who retired in 2012 after an outstanding 35-year career as a choral director in three Ohio schools, including the final 25 years at Avon Lake High School.

Among the topics that will be discussed at the 52 workshops during the NFHS Summer Meeting are esports, recruiting and retaining officials, overuse and sport specialization, crowd control, social media, inclusion, digital ticketing, and participation by students in home, charter and virtual schools.

In addition, the Legal/Sports Medicine Workshop will be held at 1:00 p.m. on June 30. This event provides an ideal opportunity to discuss current legal and medical issues, as well as an open exchange among the attendees.

The Summer Meeting will kick off on June 29 with the Opening General Session featuring Mark Wood, original member and string master of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Along with the 11th annual National High School Spirit of Sport Award ceremony, the NFHS will present its performing arts counterpart – the National High School Heart of the Arts Award – for the fifth time.

Marissa Walker of Waterford (Connecticut) High School will receive the National High School Spirit of Sport Award, and Cecelia Egan of Riverside St. Mary Academy-Bay View (Rhode Island) will receive the National High School Heart of the Arts Award.

The Second General Session on June 30 will feature NFHS President Jerome Singleton and NFHS Executive Director Bob Gardner, and the Closing General Session on July 2 will feature speaker and author, Aaron Davis.

The Summer Meeting Luncheon will be held at 12 p.m. on July 1 and will feature the presentation of NFHS Citations to 12 individuals. State association honorees include Steve Timko of New Jersey, Melissa Mertz of Pennsylvania, Keith Alexander of Louisiana, Craig Ihnen of Iowa, David Cherry of Kansas, T.J. Parks of New Mexico, Becky Anderson of Utah and Trevor Wilson of Wyoming.

The NFHS Summer Meeting will conclude at 6 p.m. July 2 with the induction of the 2018 class of the National High School Hall of Fame.


Bayside Academy’s Sam Koby Uses Lessons Learned From Prep Sports to Aid Community

Bayside Academy’s Sam Koby Uses Lessons Learned

From Prep Sports to Aid Community

 

DAPHNE, Ala. – Bayside Academy rising senior Sam Koby doesn’t consider himself a “superior volunteer,” but a look at his extracurricular activities calendar shows otherwise.

 

The president of the Daphne school’s student government association plays point guard for the Admirals’ basketball team and he’s a strong safety on the football squad. Koby is a member of the 2018 Alabama High School Athletic Association Student Leadership Group, one of two members chosen to represent the state at a national conference in Indianapolis in July.

 

The 17-year-old is one of thousands of Alabama High School Athletic Association athletes who give of themselves to their communities during the summer and throughout the year, using lessons learned at home and as part of prep team sports.

 

Koby shares his love for basketball by serving as a coach and mentor at camps for players as young as second grade.

 

Koby also volunteers at two food banks – the Prodisee Pantry and Feeding the Gulf Coast – in the metro Mobile area and has volunteered at a nearby nursing home.

 

“I wouldn’t call myself a ‘superior volunteer,’” Koby said. “I’ve helped at the food banks, the nursing home, during intramural basketball and I volunteered at an art festival and some other little things. Being so busy, I don’t do them on a weekly basis – just when I have time.”

 

With Feeding the Gulf Coast, which has offices in Alabama, Mississippi and Florida, Koby said he has worked as a donation collector, standing outside during food drives. “My dad (Roger Koby) does some fundraising events with them,” he said.

 

Prodisee Pantry is a faith-based non-profit that provides emergency food and disaster relief. According to its website, it has provided assistance to more than “110,000 Baldwin County families facing hardship stemming from job loss, medical expenses, natural disasters and other crises.”

 

“I’m more hands-on with Prodisee Pantry,” Koby said. “I sort food and have even had days when I load carts and take food to people’s cars.”

 

Koby said all the students at Bayside are encouraged to share their skills in the community. “The school does a really good job offering opportunities to volunteer, and my parents encourage me to help others,” he said. “I try to be a role model. I want to help and do the right things so younger kids know.”

 

Playing a team sport also works to help students stay on the right path, Koby said. “I definitely think there’s a family kind of atmosphere that you create with a team,” he said. “The bonds you make with people that are bigger than just hanging out on the weekend. You play together to accomplish something with everybody working together. Even people you might not be friends with – it’s cool how people you’ve never known get attached and grow together.

“Another thing that team sports does is it adds structure. If you have practice in the morning, you can’t just sleep in. Lastly, and one of the biggest things for me, is the leadership you learn. In sports, I’ve always wanted to be a leader. It has helped me to step up when I need to and develop my leadership skills.”

 

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The Alabama High School Athletic Association, founded in 1921, is a private agency organized by its member schools to control and promote their athletic programs. The purpose of the AHSAA is to regulate, coordinate and promote the interscholastic athletic programs among its member schools, which include public, private and parochial institutions.