December 15, 2014 |
Before the Northwest Raiders stormed onto the field and dominated the Pop Warner National Super Bowl Championship for the "Midget" division, their star running back was listening to Drake's song "Draft Day," getting his mind in the game. Sometimes I laugh with God about how you can't stop me I'm his darkest angel, probably, but he still got me As Drake rapped about Johnny Manziel getting drafted, 15-year-old Isheem Young of North Philadelphia was getting pumped up - for his most high-profile game to date, playing at Disney World in Orlando, Fla., for the national championship, broadcast live on ESPN2.
November 30, 2014 |
Devon Grisbaum's Meet of Champions trophy sits in her room across from her bed. Because of its placement, she sees it all the time and thinks, "I can't believe this happened. " The Ocean City senior finished 34th in the cross-country Meet of Champions as a junior, but returned a much-improved runner. Her progress started with a promise she made to last year's champion, Haddonfield's Briana Gess. Late last June, Gess, a friend of Grisbaum's, made her promise to push herself even further so she could join her at the Foot Locker National Meet in San Diego.
November 30, 2014 |
Dave Donahue saw Luke Petela in eighth grade and knew he had a natural. Donahue, Haddon Township's cross-country coach, saw the way Petela moved, his posture, and the way he carried himself inside a perfect running physique. There was only one problem. Petela was a soccer player. He did run in winter and spring track and, after Petela had more success on the track than on the pitch and his teammates encouraged him to join cross-country, Donahue finally had him on his team.
November 25, 2014 |
Dan Vassallo said the final goal in his running career was to qualify for the Olympic trials in the marathon. The 29-year-old resident of Peabody, Mass., finally achieved that goal with a bonus. On a picture-perfect day for running, Vassallo was the winner Sunday in the Gore-Tex Philadelphia Marathon, finishing the 26.2-mile race in 2 hours, 17 minutes, and 27.8 seconds. The qualifying time for the Olympic trials is 2:18:00. "I ran for the trials, but winning was a pleasant by-product of it," Vassallo said.
November 24, 2014 |
Philadelphia came alive long before sunrise Sunday, with runners from around the world in a race that went off almost without a glitch. It wasn't just the near-perfect weather for the more than 30,000 runners and thousands of family members who came to cheer them on. Everywhere, strangers loudly encouraged Philadelphia Marathon participants. "It makes such a difference as a runner to have people cheering for you," said Jerome Robinson, who stationed himself on Lincoln Drive, where he urged on those completing the first 14 miles and the returning runners as they were near the finish line.
November 16, 2014 |
The Shawnee girls' cross-country team always searches for inspiration entering its state meets. Last season, the runners tied multicolored ribbons around their shoes, with each color representing a different virtue, such as courage or passion. Sometimes they write small messages on their hands. Once it was trust, as in trust in teammates, coaching, and training. This season, what they chose for inspiration is visible to everyone. Each of the runners at last Saturday's sectionals at Delsea used blue glitter glue to write a 22 on the back of her left leg and a 24 on the right.
November 4, 2014 |
Bryan Mahon jokes that he and his nine siblings all became runners to ensure they got seats at the dinner table at home in Southern California. He kept running, first to the East Coast, thanks to a track scholarship at St. Joseph's University, and later as part of an entrepreneurial test of endurance no less daunting than the five marathons Mahon, 37, has logged. It was 10 years ago that he and partners opened a store catering to runners in a city whose running community wasn't especially cohesive or noticeable.
October 5, 2014 |
David Scholl and his brother were driving home from a funeral in South Carolina in 2008 when they started talking about what people would remember about them when they die. "We didn't really have anything, so we thought maybe we should run something," said Scholl, a database marketer for Siemens Healthcare who lives in Glenside. The funeral was a month after the Broad Street Run, so they decided to run that the following year. "That's how it started, and I'm trying not to stop," he said.
September 22, 2014 |
The end of school used to mean the beginning of vacation for Dan Helfand. The Cherry Hill East senior would enjoy two months with his mother's side of the family on the South Shore of Long Island, where he spent a lot of time on his boat, at the beach, and enjoying his time out of class for two full months. This year, though, he watched his mom and brothers go away for vacation. Helfand stayed home. He had a purpose. Last season, the Cherry Hill East boys' cross-country team won its first South Jersey Group 4 title since 1985.
September 15, 2014 |
Ryan Howard's numbers are fascinating, and they are worth a longer look from any American League team that might be interested in adding the Phillies' first baseman as a designated hitter during the offseason. Obviously, the Phillies would have to eat a lot of the $60 million remaining on Howard's contract over the next two seasons, but if they swallow enough, it could be a nice move for an American League team based on Howard's ability to produce with men on base. The Howard statistic that has received the most attention this season is his number of at-bats with men on base and with runners in scoring position.