Leader

Collapse

Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Rivals cooperate on touchdown for player with Down syndrome

Collapse

300x250 Mobile

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Rivals cooperate on touchdown for player with Down syndrome

    Rivals cooperate on touchdown for player with Down syndrome
    By RYAN YOUNG
    The Kansas City Star

    ST. JOSEPH | Matt Ziesel doesn’t stray far from coach Dan McCamy on the sidelines during St. Joseph Benton High School’s freshman football games. He likes to stay within earshot.

    “I’m ready, Coach. … Coach, I’m ready,” Ziesel says.McCamy says he hears it about 10 times a game, and also at practices, from Ziesel, his 5-foot-3, 110-pound running back.

    So in the final stages of Benton’s third game of the season on Monday at Maryville, McCamy decided it was time for Ziesel — a 15-year-old freshman with Down syndrome — to make his season debut.

    With about 10 seconds left in the game, and Benton trailing 46-0, McCamy called his final timeout, told an assistant coach to organize the team for the “Matt play” and ran across the field to the Maryville defensive huddle — and to some puzzled looks from the opposing players.

    “I’ve got a special situation,” McCamy remembers telling Maryville freshman defensive coach David McEnaney. “I know you guys want to get a shutout. Most teams would want a shutout, but in this situation I want to know if maybe you can let one of my guys run in for a touchdown.”

    Several days have passed since Ziesel chugged more than 60 yards down a sideline for his first high school touchdown — but the buzz hasn’t.

    The YouTube clip McCamy posted Tuesday morning had received more than 1,500 hits as of Thursday night. The e-mails and messages of support also have been rolling in all week — to McCamy as well as the Ziesel family.

    “It’s just amazing how one play can mean so much to one kid and then to a team and then to a community,” McCamy said Thursday after practice. “And now it’s spread not just to the community of St. Joseph, but now it’s spread across the region. How something so simple can impact so many — to me, that’s the amazing part about it.”

    Mike Ziesel, Matt’s dad, a longtime high school coach and the athletic director at Benton, was standing near the top of the bleachers Monday when a spectator told him it looked like Matt was about to enter the game. His wife, Patty, was at home. She hadn’t planned on Matt actually getting on the field Monday.

    Neither had McCamy. As he headed across the field to talk to McEnaney, McCamy wasn’t sure what the reaction would be. He asked the players to avoid physical contact with Ziesel but to make it as real as possible for him.

    “The (Maryville) players, they didn’t hesitate at all,” McEnaney said. “They jumped right on board.”

    And so Matt Ziesel ran a sweep to the right and just kept going. This time, it was McCamy making sure he was close enough to be heard — running down the sideline alongside Matt, yelling as loud as he could.

    “Come on, Matty! They’re coming!” McCamy yelled, making the play as real as possible for Ziesel.

    Benton lost Monday’s game 46-6, but those six points made a bigger impact than McCamy could have ever imagined.

    “It’s not necessarily about winning or losing,” said McCamy, a second-year coach who played college football at Missouri. “Obviously up in Maryville we lost the game. The end result, we lost the game, but when we went away, we were all kind of winners.”

    After he posted the touchdown video on YouTube on Tuesday morning, McCamy sent the link to the Ziesels, so Patty could see her son’s first high school score, and to five fellow Benton coaches.

    From there the highlight and the emotions it stirred just kept spreading.

    “I don’t know that I (have) gotten one comment from somebody who said they didn’t cry” after watching the video, Patty Ziesel said.

    Mike Ziesel, who coached boys basketball for 19 years, said what made him most proud was the way the rest of the players embraced the opportunity.

    “It was just a good thing to see people realize that the value of winning is not (as) important as it is to participate and enjoy the game,” Mike Ziesel said.

    Said McEnaney, who co-coaches the Maryville freshman team with Jordan Moree: “It just kind of takes you back to what it all really should be about.”

    The truth is, Patty Ziesel had reservations about Matt joining the football team. And after she had taken him for the mandatory physical, she received a call from his pediatrician.

    “When they got the report that said he was playing football, the pediatrician’s office said, ‘We just want you to know that (the doctor) doesn’t approve of him playing football,’ ” she recalled. “I said: ‘Well, neither do I, but here’s the deal: He wants to be part of the team, and he will be part of the team.’ ”

    To minimize the danger, Matt doesn’t take part in full-contact drills at practices, and on his touchdown run he raced untouched as players from both teams trailed along.

    Standing next to Matt on Thursday after practice, Patty said she hoped the players on both teams understood how important Monday’s touchdown — and their roles in it — were for her son.

    McCamy is sure they do.

    “Some of them get it now, but in due time all these kids who were a part of it will have a better understanding,” McCamy said. “When they grow up and they get older, everybody will realize the impact that maybe that play (has) had — not just on that kid’s life, because Matt will remember that forever — but on some of these other kids and what they may have been a part of.”


    http://www.kansascity.com/105/story/1452971.html

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ylwXOxKb7I

  • #2
    To summerize the above....

    A. This is from my hometown....and its slowly making some national news.....

    B. It was a FRESHMAN Game.....

    C. Benton was getting beat 46-6 and it was in the final minutes of the game. No way in the world were they going to win....

    D. If this doesn't bring a smile to your face....than nothing well....

    And finally....If ANYONE mouths like some of the asshats on youtube are doing.....I will come unglued.

    So, if you don't like what happened....SHUT THE HELL UP AND GO ELSEWHERE.....

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Bearcat357 View Post
      And finally....If ANYONE mouths like some of the asshats on youtube are doing.....I will come unglued.
      I hear ya. I hate reading the comments on that site.






      Futurelaw89
      Last edited by Futurelaw89; 09-22-2009, 04:15 AM. Reason: Apparently, my spelling abilities are that of a 6th grader.

      Comment


      • #4
        I gotta say what is the kid gonna think when he finds out his accomplishment was fake?

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by David Hineline View Post
          I gotta say what is the kid gonna think when he finds out his accomplishment was fake?
          Errrr....

          He's not being tricked....all of these people put aside their own agendas to allow one kid to do something he's always dreamed of doing... and that's score a touchdown......in a HS football game.....

          Doubtful he will ever get to play again.....and he will remember this one play the rest of his life.....

          Geezz......

          Comment


          • #6
            That was cool. It's always nice to know that there are good people out there.

            Comment


            • #7
              How sweet.

              And yet, 99% of the posters here think NOTHING of calling someone else a "RETard" or "'TARD".

              Never occurs to you how someone who is actually retarded (such as a Down's Syndrome kid) would feel about his condition being an epithet used against others.

              http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory?id=7223114

              I know, I know. The response is going to be all about "political correctness." No, it's NOT. It's about being a decent human being who cares about the feelings of others. And in this case it's about the feelings of people who have the least ability to defend themselves.

              Kinda like bullies on the playground going after the "retard."

              I know this is a common word used by the police. And that's a damn shame.
              Hatred never ceases by hatred, but by love alone is healed.
              Happiness never decreases by being shared. -- Buddhist quotation
              A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. -- Proverbs 15:1

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Bearcat357 View Post
                To summerize the above....

                A. This is from my hometown....and its slowly making some national news.....

                B. It was a FRESHMAN Game.....

                C. Benton was getting beat 46-6 and it was in the final minutes of the game. No way in the world were they going to win....

                D. If this doesn't bring a smile to your face....than nothing well....

                And finally....If ANYONE mouths like some of the asshats on youtube are doing.....I will come unglued.

                So, if you don't like what happened....SHUT THE HELL UP AND GO ELSEWHERE.....
                Awesome story..... Great to see the other team knew what real sportsmanship means.
                "You can't handcuff me, I'm a college graduate!"
                (Smurfette)

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Bearcat357 View Post
                  To summerize the above....

                  A. This is from my hometown....and its slowly making some national news.....

                  B. It was a FRESHMAN Game.....

                  C. Benton was getting beat 46-6 and it was in the final minutes of the game. No way in the world were they going to win....

                  D. If this doesn't bring a smile to your face....than nothing well....

                  And finally....If ANYONE mouths like some of the asshats on youtube are doing.....I will come unglued.

                  So, if you don't like what happened....SHUT THE HELL UP AND GO ELSEWHERE.....
                  Thanks for sharing that....I think I'm going to post that on my FB (hope you don't mind)

                  So often you see kids getting slammed for being stupid, selfish, or too self-absorbed. What's wonderful about this is that not only did Matt Ziesel have a special moment....all of his teammates, and the opposing team members did too. They were given the opportunity to be generous and giving.
                  Molly Weasley makes Chuck Norris eat his vegetables.

                  sigpic

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by David Hineline View Post
                    I gotta say what is the kid gonna think when he finds out his accomplishment was fake?
                    No, you don't "gotta say." You could have STFU. You could have seen the bigger picture. You could have for a moment in your caveman, knuckle dragging existance, opened your mind for one second and realized something BIGGER than that happened.

                    You're an a s s, David. Bless your heart.
                    sigpic

                    I don't agree with your opinion, but I respect its straightforwardness in terms of wrongness.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by rubyrose View Post
                      I know this is a common word used by the police. And that's a damn shame.

                      No, its' NOT common to LE. It's common slang. And it's despicable.
                      sigpic

                      I don't agree with your opinion, but I respect its straightforwardness in terms of wrongness.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Smurfette_76 View Post
                        opened your mind for one second and realized something BIGGER than that happened.
                        You are correct.....Something very big and special happened. I am very proud of my boys.....

                        And it ticks me of that some folks don't get it.....

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Smurfette_76 View Post
                          It's common slang. And it's despicable.
                          It is....and some of us are trying to break themselves of using it.....

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Good for those kids--all of them.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Thanks

                              BearCat357.......Thanks for posting that... I was having a down day at work, and that brought a smile on my face, and even a little bit watery eyes. Yeah guys I SAID IT. I could just picture him running with the ball, and how his DAD was cheering him on. DAD must have been soooooooo proud. I can't wait to get out of work and check out the video.

                              Livew1re out

                              Oh and PS: David think before you speak..............

                              Comment

                              MR300x250 Tablet

                              Collapse

                              What's Going On

                              Collapse

                              There are currently 3540 users online. 223 members and 3317 guests.

                              Most users ever online was 26,947 at 07:36 PM on 12-29-2019.

                              Welcome Ad

                              Collapse
                              Working...
                              X