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Archive for November 22, 2021

Nov. 22, 2021 — Turning a trope on its head

The trophy ceremony at the end of a championship match is sometimes hard to watch. It’s not because of the climactic trophy lift, but because first, there is a ceremony for the runners-up.

I’ve seen many a teary, red-faced athlete step away from that ceremony extremely unhappy. Sometimes, players who are given silver medals take them off right away, as if finishing second was a shameful act.

Sure, the “second place is the first loser” ethic in our society has overtaken a lot of sporting endeavors. But nobody told that to the field hockey team at Newark (Del.) Charter.

Charter lost the Division 2 final to Delmar by a score of 8-0. Yet, when the captains received the second-place trophy from DIAA officials, the captains jumped and ran with the trophy with their teammates, and jumped up and down in celebration as if they had won the game.

Charter left the Dover field just happy to have had a 15-3 season which included 11 clean sheets. They weren’t sad because of the result, but happy to have had the experience as a team.

Kudos and a hearty “Well played!” to the Patriots and head coach Stacey Spiker. I think more runner-up teams should have this kind of positive attitude.