Prep Rally

  • Connor Callihan is carted away to an ambulance shortly after the race. (Photo courtesy Katie Bailey/Citizen-Times/<span style=color: #646464; font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: 11px; line-height: 16px;>bkbailey@citizen-times.com<span style=color: #000000; font-family: 'Helvetica Neue', HelveticaNeue, helvetica, arial, sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 19.2000007629395px;>)</span></span>

    Connor Callihan was mere feet from the finish line at the cross-country conference championships when he suddenly stumbled. Not knowing what had happened, fans started yelling for him to get up, to finish the race.

    But standing was completely out of the question: Callihan's right leg had snapped, his tibia breaking in three places.

    “His leg was in a way nature didn’t intend it to be,” his coach said in an interview with Greenville Online. “This went from an admirable effort to something totally different.”

    He couldn't get up, but he could finish. Callihan, a junior at Roberson High in Asheville, N.C., crawled the last five feet. He crossed the line in searing pain.

    “This was my last race of the year,” he said Tuesday. “I just had to finish for my team. I just had to.”

    His story caught the eye of a fellow runner Manteo Mitchell, who was a standout at Western Carolina University and went on to compete in the 2012 Olympics. Mitchell knows the pain Callihan is suffering, as his fibula

    Read More »from His leg broken in several places, H.S. runner crawls across finish line
  • A pair of high school soccer coaches resigned Tuesday night as their team is being investigated for taunting a West African player on the opposing team. Players are also facing suspension. The taunts weren't run of the mill trash talk – Northampton, Pa. players yelled "Ebola" throughout an Oct. 9 game, directing the word at Ibraham Tounkaraon, a Nazareth, Pa. player who is originally from Guinea.

    According to fans who reported the taunting to local media, some of the players were yelling that they hoped he contracted Ebola. The 16-year-old player's legal guardian, Edward Bachert, told the paper that there were also racial slurs thrown around.

    Tounkaraon grew so frustrated that he charged at one of the Northampton players in the final minutes of the game, and was subsequently ejected.

    "He was upset on the field, he was upset when I saw him after the game, he was upset when he came home," Bachert told The Morning Call. The boy came to the U.S. three years ago with three siblings, but his

    Read More »from Coaches resign after H.S. soccer team taunts opposing player with 'Ebola' and racial slurs
  • Brazil&#39;s Neymar celebrates after scoring his fourth goal against Japan during an international friendly soccer match in Singapore, Tuesday, Oct. 14, 2014. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)Brazil's Neymar celebrates after scoring his fourth goal against Japan during an international friendly soccer match in Singapore, Tuesday, Oct. 14, 2014. (AP Photo/Wong Maye-E)A high schooler in Texas just turned down $10,000. Instead of the money, she chose something she thinks is a lot more exciting: an all-expenses trip to Spain to meet Neymar. 

    Rhiannon Conelley, 16, is the goalie on her school's varsity team (and a decent one, based on this reel). When she heard about the contest in June, she immediately entered. It was hosted by a Brazilian sports drink company, and they wanted photos proving why each person should win. She sent in a few of herself wearing Neymar's jersey while doing trick shots known as "dominadas," according to the El Paso Times

    More than 4,000 people voted for her over the other 2,000 contestants. 

    “It feels good. I mean to go to Spain and meet your idol, it feels awesome,” she told the El Paso Times.

    It doesn't seem like she even considered taking the money, despite family, friends and plenty of strangers on Twitter trying to convince her she should. And so, Conelley, her mom and her coach will travel to Barcelona sometime later

    Read More »from Given choice between $10,000 and meeting Neymar, this girl picked Neymar
  • Between school and practice, it's hard enough for some high school kids to keep up with one sport. Try playing two in the same season – and excelling in both. That's exactly what the Speedway (Ind.) High School football kicker is doing. 

    Melanie McHenry spends a half-hour practicing with the football team each day before heading up to the gym for a two-hour volleyball practice. She stands out enough just for being a girl suiting up in a boy's sport, but there are an estimated 1,500 girls playing high school football this year. What makes her one-of-a-kind is the volleyball scholarship waiting for her at Louisville. 

    She even got permission from the Louisville coaches. "The Louisville coaching staff is OK with me playing football, but they also say no contact," McHenry told MaxPreps.com

    Read More »from She's the only girl on the team, but that's not what makes this football player unique
  • It is a town centered around the high school football team, but residents of Sayreville, N.J., may be waiting a long, long time before they see their boys play another down. After canceling the remainder of this season in light of allegations of hazing and sexual assault taking place in the football locker room, the district superintendent said Sunday that he's now considering canceling the entire program.

    Superintendent Richard Labbe explained that the Middlesex County (N.J.) Prosecutor’s Office is indicating that harassment, bullying and intimidation in the locker room were nothing new this year. The information shows it “was pervasive, meaning it was beyond this year. Is he going to be able to substantiate it? That’s the information he is gathering," Labbe said, according to USA Today.

    “The question of whether we are going to have a football program going forward is a critical one I am now going to be addressing,” Labbe said. The investigation is still being handled by the

    Read More »from Sayreville superintendent considers canceling football program
  • She transfers the glove to her shorter right arm in order to throw with her left. Screengrab from KUSA.&nbsp;She transfers the glove to her shorter right arm in order to throw with her left. Screengrab from KUSA. It's hard enough for a freshman to make the varsity team, harder still to win the starting job. Now, imagine doing it with one arm. 

    That's what Northglenn (Co.) High School's Jaide Bucher accomplished this fall. The spunky teen was born with only the upper part of her right arm. The lower part, starting at her elbow, was naturally amputated in vitro after circulation was cut off by a condition called amniotic band syndrome.

    Regardless, she throws and catches as quickly as any other player, as one would expect of the starting catcher. As soon as she catches the ball with the glove on her left hand, she seamlessly rests the ball on her left forearm and transfers the glove onto her shorterened right arm. She explains the movement in this KUSA feature.

    Despite played for nearly a decade, Bucher never expected to be starting as a freshman. "I was just hoping I'd make the team, not become the starting catcher." she told KUSA. "That's one of the biggest accomplishments I've had."

    At tryouts,

    Read More »from This inspiring H.S. softball player proves that anything is possible
  • Screenshot from CBS Pittsburgh.Screenshot from CBS Pittsburgh.Two 17-year-old high school soccer players and their coach were suspended this week following a heartbreaking act of hazing: the players allegedly duct taped a teammate with autism to the goal post, then left him there alone as he screamed for help.

    An off-duty state trooper heard the screams coming from the soccer field at Highlands (Pa.) High School on Sunday. Rushing over, she found a terrified Austin Babinsack, 16. Babinsack later told CBS Pittsburgh that the two players had forced him into a car and driven him to the field on Sunday night. "They duct taped my hands, my legs, up to my waist, all the way around the whole pole," he said. "And then they attempted to try to take a picture of it." 

    They left him there for about 15 minutes, as they reportedly drove off to get another student.

    Before Sunday, he'd been very proud to be part of the team, his mom, Kristy Babinsack told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. She added that Austin often wore the team warm-up suit to bed. 

    The school is

    Read More »from H.S. soccer coach, players suspended after alleged hazing of player with autism
  • Screengrab from CBS2.Screengrab from CBS2.Amid allegations of senior football players hazing freshman teammates, Sayreville (N.J.) War Memorial High School canceled the football season on Monday night. On Tuesday, the Board of Education upheld the decision despite outcry from players and parents.

    Apparently, football runs the show in Sayreville, a blue-collar town about 40 minutes from New York City.

    Little has been publicly disclosed about the ongoing criminal investigation, but according to a Sports Illustrated report, the acts were sexual in nature.

    From Sports Illustrated:

    According to SI sources, including one close to the investigation, the allegations are lewd: Investigators are looking into whether upperclassmen on the Sayreville football team digitally penetrated underclassmen on the team. That could explain why one parent told the Newark Star-Ledger that underclassmen players would “stampede” to the locker room to get dressed and exit quickly.

    Digital penetration is the legal term for using the hand to penetrate.

    Read More »from Alleged hazing at N.J. high school may have been sexual in nature
  • Screenshot from Orlando Sentinel.Screenshot from Orlando Sentinel.A high school bowling coach in Florida said he'd shave his beard if someone on the team rolled a perfect score. The team didn't make him wait long: in the next practice, Petey Vergos bowled a 300.

    It seems like an amazing story, but the coach knew he was playing with fire as soon as he made the bet. You sort of have to wonder if he actually wanted to shave the beard, because Vergos had already acheived the feat more than 50 times, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

    The Apopka High School sophomore started bowling when he was in 8th grade. Just three years later, he claims he's racked up 58 perfect scores in practice and matches. 

    There's no way of knowing if Vergos has broken the state record, as Florida doesn't keep those records, but the record for professionals on the PBA is 97 sanctioned 300s.

    "I try not to think about the 300s so much as just going through frame by frame," Vergos said. "I don't want to get ahead of myself."

    Even with all those strikes, Vergos has yet to bowl a

    Read More »from Florida teen has bowled 58 perfect games in three years
  • It seems like N.J. football has stepped back at least a decade this week.

    First there was the announcement that Sayreville (N.J.) War Memorial High School was canceling its football season over allegations of hazing. As that news was being reported, local stations in N.J. added a footnote: elsewhere in the state, a father had been arrested for attacking his son's youth football coach.

    According to USA Today,

    The coach stated that after the game against the Toms River Junior Raiders, [James] Oleske ran across the field toward him and then tackled him without any provocation or warning. The two men then fought on the ground until bystanders broke them apart, according to police.

    Oleske has a son on the Indians team and he was in the broadcast booth videotaping the players during the game, according to police. After the game, he found out that the coach told the players to turn in their equipment and the season would be over because of their reported ongoing bad attitudes.

    In other

    Read More »from Trio of incidents create rough week off the field for NJ football
  • Superintendent Richard Labbe during a press conference on Friday, as seen in a CBS 2 report.Superintendent Richard Labbe during a press conference on Friday, as seen in a CBS 2 report.A group of players in one of New Jersey's best high school football programs allegedly hazed teammates extensively – enough to warrant a criminal investigation and to cancel the remainder of Sayreville War Memorial High School's season, district superintendent Richard Labbe announced on Monday night.

    "There was enough evidence to substantiate there were incidents of harassment, intimidation and bullying that took place on a pervasive level, on a wide-scale level and at a level in which the players knew, tolerated and in general accepted," Labbe said in a news conference held after a two-hour closed meeting with parents. He did not comment on whether the coaching staff was involved.

    The Sayreville Police Department and Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office are handling the investigation. The allegations were made directly to the police, and school officials have not been told who filed the report. They were first informed of the investigation on Thursday morning, prompting the district

    Read More »from Sayreville H.S. cancels football season over allegations of 'pervasive' hazing
  • The 2014 Lincoln High School Abes, in a photo posted on the team's booster club's Facebook page.The 2014 Lincoln High School Abes, in a photo posted on the team's booster club's Facebook page.When 16-year NFL veteran Jon Kitna retired, he decided to coach his old high school football team in Tacoma, Wash., where his son would soon be a freshman. He also started teaching algebra.

    That was in early 2012. Now, his son is the junior quarterback, and they've turned Lincoln High School back into the powerhouse that it was during the older Kitna's high school days.

    Such a powerhouse, in fact, that on Friday night they won in embarrassingly big fashion. But while many gawked at the score, the opposing coach said it's all part of the game.

    Kitna's son, Jordan, threw for seven touchdowns and 197 yards in the first half, giving the Abes a 70-0 lead. The elder Kitna didn't play any of his starters in the second half, didn't let any of the three QBs throw a pass longer than five yards after the first quarter, and stopped blitzing in the second. All 60 guys on the roster got into the game – and in the second half, the back-ups added another five touchdowns to round out the 91-0 win.

    Read More »from Coached by Jon Kitna, H.S. team runs score to 91-0
  • New York teen tragedy results in third prep football player death this week

    In what has become an annual tragedy on high school campuses across the country, a New York teenager became the third prep football player to die from an apparent head or brain injury this week.

    Shoreham (N.Y.)-Wading River High junior offensive lineman and linebacker Tom Cutinella, 16, died Wednesday from a head injury suffered in the third quarter of a game against Elwood (N.Y.) John Glenn High earlier in the afternoon, according to Newsday. The Wildcats (3-0) also played on Saturday.

    The two teams reportedly stopped the game with Shoreham leading 17-12 when Cutinella was rushed to hearby Huntington (N.Y.) Hospital in an ambulance. "It was a big hit," Shoreham coach Matt Millheiser told Newsday at the time of the injury. When word from doctors ultimately reached the estimated 60 community members in the waiting room that Cutinella died, a shaken Millheiser added, "He was a great kid."

    Cutinella announced plans to run for junior class president on Twitter just last month.

    Read More »from New York teen tragedy results in third prep football player death this week
  • Some of the country's top high school football players could face off in a State Champions Bowl Series this December. (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken)Some of the country's top high school football players could face off in a State Champions Bowl Series this December. (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken)There could be a high school football championship bowl series this year – but it won't necessarily feature the nation's best teams.

    The Florida High School Athletics Association on Monday approved a plan for three bowl games to be played in Boca Raton in late December. The series is tentatively called the State Champions Bowl Series and is being organized by Paragon Sports Marketing, the Illinois company that created basketball's National High School Invitational (now called the Dick's Sporting Goods High School National Tournament).  

    Paragon will oversee the selection committee, making all decisions after each state has finished its respective championship games. The Orlando Sun Sentinel reports that selection will be based on national rankings from USA Today and others, and schools must be part of their state athletic associations, which must be part of the National Federation of High School Associations, in order to play.

    They're all welcome, but that doesn't mean they'll all be

    Read More »from Florida approves a H.S. football national bowl series for December
  • The second-year coach was driving seven girls to an invitational meet.The second-year coach was driving seven girls to an invitational meet.A high school cross country coach in South Carolina was arrested for a DUI while driving the girls team to an invitational meet on Friday. Second-year assistant coach Dedra Kiser, 42, was charged with driving under the influence and child endangerment. Spartanburg High School has also placed her on paid administative leave, according to the Associated Press.

    Kiser was driving a district-owned Chevy Suburban to the 2014 Lowcountry Invitational on James Island, about three hours from their school, when a police officer reported over the radio:

    The driver of that truck is an idiot. …They were swerving over the fog line, straddling lanes of traffic, and almost hit another car.

    With the seven girls looking on, Kiser told the officer that she had not been drinking, but then failed a field sobriety test and refused a breathalyzer test, according to GoUpstate.com. She was held in the Charleston County Jail until Saturday night, and the athletes' parents had to meet them at the police station

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  • A middle school team in Missouri pulled off this weekend's best trick play, as center Josh Copeland and quarterback Atiq Muhammed left the other team completely stumped.

    Lewis and Clark Middle School's Copeland handed the ball off to Muhammed, who held it over his head and pretended they'd grabbed the wrong ball for the game as he strolled through the defensive line, then took off for the endzone.

    The announcer seemed to be the only one who knew what was going on – even the refs looked stumped. It was only the first play from scrimmage.

    Coach Shawn Griggs told MaxPreps that the play was inspired by "The Annexation of Puerto Rico," the trick play masterminded by Nubie in the 1994 classic "Little Giants."

    "Little Giants" is older than every player on that field, but LCMS gave their version a much more modern name: "The Ugly Kardashian." Griggs didn't explain the name, other than saying that it made the players laugh. "Football is supposed to be fun," he said. "So the name stayed."

    LCMS

    Read More »from Middle school team pulls off trick play called 'The Ugly Kardashian'
  • CBS interviewed the mother of one of the players, showing photos of the blisters on her hands.&nbsp;CBS interviewed the mother of one of the players, showing photos of the blisters on her hands. After a JV girl's volleyball team did a series of bear crawls and pushups on hot blacktop in the midst of California's heat wave last week, the girls' hands started blistering, their skin soon peeling off. 

    One mother took her 14-year-old daughter to urgent care to treat the blisters. The doctor reportedly told them the second- and third-degree burns were definitely from the temperature of the blacktop. The mom called the local police, and after several more parents complained, the district fired coach Mercedes Winchester, 25.

    “It was a captain’s decision [on Wednesday], and it was around 3:15 p.m. It was overcast at the time, so I thought it was OK," Winchester told the Daily Press, adding that she didn't test the temperature of the pavement. 

    The school is in Hesperia, Calif., where temperatures reached 96 degrees (with 83 percent humidity) on Wednesday, according to Weather Underground. The nearby L.A. Unified School District had cancelled all outdoor activities that day due to the

    Read More »from Volleyball coach fired over bear crawls on burning blacktop
  • The LAUSD includes 83 high schools. Photo courtesy LAUSD Facebook page.The LAUSD includes 83 high schools. Photo courtesy LAUSD Facebook page.Local football coaches are criticizing the Los Angeles Unified School District for the way it reacted to Southern California’s recent record-breaking heat wave.

    As temperatures soared last week, spiking at 103 degrees in downtown Los Angeles, the LAUSD cancelled all outdoor sports activities on Monday. There were no practices scheduled on Tuesday because of a professional development day, so Wednesday was set to be the first real practice of the week.

    But at 3:12 p.m. that day, another notice came through. All outdoor activities were again cancelled, from boy’s waterpolo, girl’s tennis, and girl’s golf matches to elementary after-school activities.

    The loudest complaints came from the football coaches, who said heading into the weekend’s games without sufficient practice created health concerns of another kind. It also created a disadvantage for any schools facing private schools, which hadn't heeded the heat warnings. 

    The district’s athletics coordinator, Trent Cornelius, tells Yahoo

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  • The staff of The Playwickian in a photo posted on the paper's Facebook page on April 1, 2013.The staff of The Playwickian in a photo posted on the paper's Facebook page on April 1, 2013.The editorial board of a high school newspaper in Langhorne, Pa., decided to stop using the name of the school's mascot in Oct. 2013.

    The Neshaminy High School mascot is the same as that of the Washington NFL team, and the student journalists were among the first to do what The Washington Post and other news outlets have since done. The local Bucks County Courier Times also dropped the name from coverage of the school's sports.

    The student editors and adviser received statewide awards for the decision. The school administration, though, doesn't seem to see it as exemplary. The issue came to a head when the editors refused to print a letter to the editor written by a school board member's son, who is also on the football team.

    "He spoke of his r-word pride in detail, so we edited the mascot name to be R-----. Administration told us we must publish the newspaper with the full letter and mascot name," recalls editor-in-chief Gillian McGoldrick.

    Instead, they left a blank space, adding an

    Read More »from School newspaper editor, adviser suspended for taking stand against mascot name
  • Football players score against their own teams all the time. The first goal of this year's World Cup was an own goal. But that's the other football, i.e. soccer. It's supposed to be pretty much impossible in American football.

    And yet on Friday, a South Dakota high school football team found a way. On an extra point attempt, the ball bounced off a defender's head, onto the crossbar, and through the uprights. The poor kid probably didn't know what hit him. The officials didn't even seem to know how to call it at first.

    Here it is in slow motion:

    &nbsp; 

    Milbank High School was already trailing 37-0 in the second quarter when it happened.

    According to Big Sioux Media, Dell Rapids continued to trample all over Milbank. The game ended at halftime, with Dell Rapids winning 51-0. Clearly, the Milbank kids just can't catch a break.

    - - - - - - -

    Danielle Elliot is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email her at delliot@yahoo-inc.com or follow her on Twitter! 

    Follow @daniellelliot

    Read More »from D'oh! High school football teams gets extra point after ball bounces off player's head