- Kevin Kaduk at Prep Rally3 days ago
Officials at Wichita East High School in Kansas are under fire after a special needs student was told he could not wear a varsity letter jacket because he was not competing at a varsity level.
Michael Kelley, who has Down syndrome and autism, participates on Wichita East's special needs basketball team, an extra-curricular activity organized by the school's special needs teachers. His mother, Jolinda Kelley, bought her son a letter jacket and varsity letter to mark her son's participation.
According to Jolinda, Michael was asked to remove the jacket while at school and given a sweatshirt to wear instead. As reported by Wichita TV station WKSN, Jolinda says she was told another parent complained that Michael wasn't a varsity athlete and therefore shouldn't be wearing a varsity letter jacket.
It was a view that was backed up by Wichita East principal Ken Thiessen in an interview on KSN.
"Teachers told the parents they would prefer he not wear the letter on his jacket," Thiessen said.
- Danielle Elliot at Prep Rally6 days ago
On Tuesday morning, Montverde Academy (Montverde, Fl.) senior Ben Simmons was named the 2014-15 Gatorade National Boys Basketball Player of the Year.
The 6-foot-10, 220-pound Australian-born forward walked into the lockerroom around 9:30 a.m., he says. Only his coach was there, but as they walked through to the gym, he was met by a surprise ceremony honoring his acheivements on the court and off. Nine-time NBA All-Star Dominique Wilkins was even there to hand him the trophy.
"It was great, he’s a great kid," Wilkins told Yahoo Sports. "I don’t look just at his basketball. Academically as well as socially, this kid is a wonderful human being, has a great personality, couldn’t ask for a better."
Now in its 30th year, the award honors students who show exemplary skills on the court, as well as community service and academic excellence. Simmons was selected from a pool of nearly 440,000 high school boys basketball players across the country.
- Danielle Elliot at Prep Rally7 days ago
Talk about a comeback. St. Charles (Mo.) trailed by as much as 21 points in the first half of the state final against Hillcrest (Springfield, Mo.) High School.
Doing it the hard way...state champs after trailing by 21. St Charles Pirates win 4A title. pic.twitter.com/VMuaOedojq
Hillcrest shooting guard Brady Petry was hitting threes from all over the court, all but putting on a clinic, as the Hornets built their lead.
"He would hit three after three and I would just look at Casey and I would just be like, 'I don't think he's going to miss,'" St. Charles senior Chase Morfeld told Fox2. But the Pirates kept fighting.
"We weren't going to give up, it was going to be our last game so I mean we were just going to fight to the end win or lose," said Morfeld.
- Danielle Elliot at Prep Rally10 days ago
As the clock ticked away at the end of the third quarter in Thursday's lacrosse game between Wheat Ridge (Co.) High School and Boulder High, Wheat Ridge goalie Nolan Hector took a last-second shot.
Actually, there wasn't even a full second on the clock, just 0.7 seconds. Check out what happened:
There's nothing Prep Rally loves more than seeing a team play to the final seconds. It doesn't matter if that's the final seconds of the game or the quarter or whatever – every second counts. Props to Hector for following through.
His goal gave Wheat Ridge the 9-8 advantage, and the team went on to win 15-11.
- Danielle Elliot at Prep Rally12 days ago
President Barack Obama talks about basketball all the time. Just today, he released his latest NCAA tournament bracket. Beyond being a fan, the President is an active player who loves a game of pick-up.
In a letter posted Tuesday by WhiteHouse.gov, the President added his thoughts on high school basketball, and how much it impacted his life.
He was responding to a letter from a South Central Los Angeles high school player named Matthew. The senior explained that he'd recently transferred high schools because of basketball.
"[Basketball] keeps my grades up and in the long run I know it will make me a better person as I grow," he wrote. He went on to say that he feels school supplies are not equally distributed in his community, and doesn't understand why some schools in richer areas seem to gain preferential treatment.
- Danielle Elliot at Prep Rally13 days ago
Trailing by eight with 15 seconds left, most high school teams would look dejected. The Dansville (Mich.) boys varsity team instead rose to the occasion in Saturday's district final.
Brian Calloway of the Lansing State Journal recapped the astounding comeback:
Carter Frantz and Ben Lober each hit 3s during the late push for Dansville. The Aggies (9-13) then received a technical for knocking the ball out of bounds. Galesburg-Augusta didn’t convert the technical free throws with around 4.6 seconds remaining, but split free throws after another quick foul to go ahead two. That’s when Frantz received a full-court pass and hit a layup to send the contest to overtime.
Dansville went on to win 46-38 in overtime. It's the team's first district title since 2000.
“Here we are in the district championship with it sort of slipping away from us and we dug deep and refused to lose and that’s a real credit to them and something we can definitely build on going forward," the coach told Calloway.
- Danielle Elliot at Prep Rally14 days ago
Henrico (Va.) High School senior Walter Williams put on a dunking clinic in the state championship game on Sunday. It was far from a solo effort, though, as his teammates clearly deserve a credit for setting him up so seamlessly.
Their efforts put the icing on the 78-64 Group 5A state title win. It was the final high school game for Williams, who will play at Virginia State next year.
Check out March Madness coverage from Yahoo Sports:
- Danielle Elliot at Prep Rally18 days ago
Juan Thornhill of Altavista (Va.) High School more than enjoyed the final game of his basketball career on Wednesday. The 6-foot-1 senior dunked not once, not twice, but three times as he helped propel his team to its third-straight Virgina High School League Group 1A state title.
He showed that he can dunk any which way he wants, flying through the lane for a two-handed slam on an inbounds pass, then a single-handed monster jam, then capping it with an alley-oop off the backboard.
That final dunk was definitely the most exciting, according to the News Advance.
- Danielle Elliot at Prep Rally19 days ago
When Larry Bailey asked his students at Ashland (Ky.) Middle School to think of a research project, one decided to research her dad's favorite baseball player: Pete Rose. Rose also happens to be Bailey's childhood hero. Naturally, he gave her the green light.
About six months later, that class project has taken on a life of its own. Abby Campbell, with the help of Bailey, is compiling a list of 4,256 reasons Rose should be in the Baseball Hall of Fame – one for each hit he notched during his MLB career.
Rose played 23 years in the majors, most of them with the Cincinnati Reds. He was the 1963 National League Rookie of the Year, 1973 NL MVP, and won three batting titles and two Gold Gloves. He helped the Reds to two World Series titles and the Phillies to the organization's first before retiring in 1986 as the all-time leader in hits, games and at-bats.
- Jay Busbee at Prep Rally19 days ago
In a land where basketball is religion, every so often a game turns into a tent revival.
Kentucky's Williamsburg High School hasn't been to a regional final since 1946. So when the Yellow Jackets finally broke a nearly 70-year drought to win Kentucky's 13th Region championship, well, folks were more than a little happy. Take a listen to the final seconds of the game, as called on radio station WEZJ:
That, folks, is the kind of elation that only comes along once a century or so.
To take the championship, the Williamsburg Yellow Jackets had to knock off the two-time defending regional champion Clay County Tigers, a team that had twice rebounded from early deficits this tournament to advance.
Williamsburg now gets a week off to prepare for the state championship. Its fans and announcers, at least, could probably use the break.