Monday, July 8, 2019

Softball Team Helps Their Opponent Win

An incredible display of sportsmanship occurred when Western Oregon played Central Washington University in 2008. At stake was a bid to the NCAA’s Division II playoffs. With Central Washington leading 2-1, Western Oregon’s Sara Tucholsky hit an apparent three-run homerun. All she had to do was run around the bases.

But when Tucholsky reached first base she collapsed, having torn a ligament in her knee. She couldn’t finish rounding the bases and her run wouldn’t count. The rules prohibited her teammates from helping her around the bases. If they touched her, she would be called out. 

But then a player on the opposing team, Mallory Holtman, asked the umpire if the rules disallowed the other team from helping her. The umpire said nothing in the rulebook prohibited them from assisting her.

Holtman and a teammate picked up Tucholsky and resumed her homerun walk, pausing at each base to let her touch the bag with her uninjured leg. “We started laughing when we touched second base,” Holtman said.
“I wondered what this must look like to other people. The entire Western Oregon team was in tears.” “My whole team was crying,” Tucholsky said. “Everybody in the stands was crying. My coach was crying.”

Western Oregon won the game 4-2. Central Washington forfeited the playoffs so they could help their injured opponent. Some things, like helping a hurting person, are more important than winning ball games. (Slaying Your Giants, p.112, $7.99)

Jesus said, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matt. 22:39). When you swap places with others to feel how they hurt, you've taken the first step toward loving your neighbor as yourself.

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Making Life Count Ministries
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