Athletes love to compete; it’s the nature of sports. They spend as much time as possible perfecting their skills and sometimes their efforts are rewarded. Achievements on a field, court and track can lead to awards. Awards are one way of acknowledging individual and team performances. Both achievements and awards can be stepping stones that lead to opportunities. It could be an opportunity to compete one last time in an all star game or it might even lengthen into a career on the next level.
Recently the North-South football and basketball rosters were announced. The best players in the state of West Virginia are divided up geographically on two different teams and will play their last high school games in mid June.
In gridiron action, five Harrison County players have been selected to participate in the event that will be played at Laidley Field in Charleston. A pair of defensive players from Bridgeport will suit up. Lineman, Noah Markely and defensive back, Luke Southern were both major contributors to the program that has won three consecutive Class AA titles.
Robert C. Byrd also will send a pair of players to the state capital. Cole Fisher (tight end and linebacker) and Juwan Jones-Wright (running back and defensive lineman) will also play together this fall as members of the Glenville State football squad.
South Harrison will send Josh McNemar to the June 18th spectacular. McNemar was a tremendous force on both the offensive and defensive lines for the Hawks this past season.
On the hardwood, a pair of games will feature a pair of local players on each roster. On the girls side, Notre Dame’s Hannah Griffith and Robert C. Byrd’s Corin Todd will represent Harrison County. Griffith led the Fighting Irish to the state basketball tournament and Todd has been an intrical part of the Flying Eagles program over the past several years. This game returns after a decade hiatus and will be played at Glenville State in early June.
On the boys side, Bridgeport’s Nick Greely and Robert C. Byrd’s Luke Dyer get the call. Both players led their respective teams to Charleston. However, both have different skill sets. Greely is a post player that can step outside and hit the jumper while Dyer is a guard that isn’t afraid to head into the paint and mix it up. This tilt is set for mid June and will be played at the Charleston Community Center. This venue has been kind to county participants. The last time I was there my broadcast partner and good friend Jerome Axton took home The Player of the Game Award for the North squad-great memories indeed! Speaking of opportunities, there were five West Virginia football players selected in the NFL draft last week.
After losing most of his final season in Morgantown to injury, safety Karl Joseph was taken with the 14th pick by the Oakland Raiders. Corner back, Daryl Worley was chosen in the third round by Carolina. On the last day of the draft Nick Kwiatkoski (fourth round Chicago), KJ Dillon (fifth round Houston) and Wendall Smallwood (fifth round by Philadelphia) were selected.
There were also several other former West Virginia University players that were signed by teams immediately following the draft. This is the ultimate opportunity for these players to make a career out of a sport that they love. Sometimes hard work does play off!
That will do it for now. Until next week…take care and God Bless!