Having coached Little League/Ponytail softball for 11 years, this story just struck me as an inspiring and selfless act that deserves attention (it has gotten a lot of coverage). The teams involved were battling for a playoff spot. The player who was hurt (Sara Tucholsky) was a career .153 hitter and this was her first home run - ever. She was a senior and it was senior-day. The opposing player (Mallory Holtman) who came up with the idea to help her was the all-time home run leader for the conference. While the team that carried her around the bases eventually lost the game, they accomplished something much more important. Watch the video - it will make your day.
What is sportsmanship
Wednesday, April 30, 2008
By Travis David Sports Writer
Central Washington's Liz Wallace (left) and Mallory Holtman (right) are pictured carrying Western Oregon's Sara Tucholsky around the bases. Tucholsky was injured as she tried to round the bases on her own after a home run. (Submitted photo).
... As I was skimming through espn.com the other day I came across a very touching sports story involving sportsmanship in the positive way. The story came from a Western Oregon and Central Washington (Div. II) softball game on Saturday in a Great Northwest Athletic Conference game.
Western Oregon senior Sara Tucholsky stepped to the plate in the top second inning in a scoreless game. The senior was batting a woeful .088 on the season heading into the game. Then on an 0-1 pitch she belted a three-run homer over the center field fence for an early lead. The homer was the first of Tucholshy's career.
As Tucholsky was approaching second base when rounding the bases, she realized she had missed first base, and as she was circling back to touch the base, her knee gave out, collapsing just short of first base.
Before head coach Pam Knox motioned for a substitute runner to take the place of the fallen batter, opposing first base man Mallory Holtman, who is incidentally the career leader in home runs for Central Washington, and Central Washington's shortstop Liz Wallace picked up Tucholsky and carried the injured player around the base paths, helping her gingerly touch each base and giving way to a swarm of Tucholsky's teammates waiting at home plate.
At the time it was made clear that if Tucholsky could not round the bases on her own power a substitute could be brought in and take over at first base, giving her credit for only a two-run SINGLE and not a home run. But Holtman, a senior herself, playing on senior day knew that her and her teammates could help and it still count as a home run.