Western Oregon vs Central Washington. Sara Tucholsky at the plate. 2 runners on. 0-1 count. She swings! It’s a home run! Her first career home run, I might add! Western Oregon wins the game and sends Central Washington packing with their playoff hopes. Right? Well…yeah. That did happen. But not before one of the most amazing acts of sportsmanship that I have ever heard of took place.
Apparently when rounding first base, Tucholsky tore a ligament in her knee. Writhing in pain, she couldn’t round the bases. The rules state that her teammates cannot help her round the bases, and if she can’t, her team is allowed a runner at first, negating her first career home run and allowing Central Washington another chance to continue their run.
But guess what happens. The Central Washington firstbaseman (Mallory Holtman, the CAREER Home Run leader in the Great Northwestern Athletic Conference) asks the ump if she and her teammate can CARRY Sara around the bases. The ump had never heard of a rule that stated that they couldn’t. So very carefully, they picked Sara up, carried her from base to base, stopping gently to allow her to touch the bases, and then proceeded to lose the game.
If there ever was a story that brings joy to my heart, it’s this one. All of the millions of dollars. All of the ego, all of the talk, all of the drugs. Sports has really become a whirlwind of bad feelings. Professional players are too egotistical and distant from their fans (right Chad Johnson?). College teams recruit players illegally, trying to get that one golden player that could win them a championship and the national spotlight. But then this…
And now my bad feelings are gone.
Congratulations to Western Oregon for making a run in the softball playoffs! I hope they win the whole darn thing!
But really the congratulations goes to Central Washington…for making me appreciate what sports can do for a person as an athlete, as a spectator or as a person. It feels good again! And that’s why we play or watch sports to begin with…
Here’s the story…go check it out.