To keep a young tradition alive that started at IndySportsNation.com last year, I posted part one of the second-annual Fox 59 Sports Best of IHSAA Awards last night.
To tell the truth, it's probably one of my favorite stories to write each year because it:
A. Showcases the rather large body of work that we at Fox 59 Sports put into high school sports during the eleven month season.
B. It actually gives me reason to use all of the old archived footage that has been taking up space on my hard drive.
C. It keeps me in an air-conditioned office all day long. You tend to enjoy these days when you know in a month you'll be chasing around football players on a 103 degree day with a television camera.
However as a running joke that started with our one and done try at seasonal football awards in 2009, I had written this:
"The winner of each award gets a nice pat on the back and the realization that on Twitter you are #winning. In return, we hope to one day pick up a college program from an event, and in the winner's biography section it states "In 2011, Cody Zeller won a Best of Fox 59 Sports IHSAA award."
So it was pretty awesome when fellow Fox 59 Sports comrade Larry Hawley had come across the middle of former Zionsville product Blake Lueders' Stanford football profile:
...Indiana Football Coaches Association and Associated Press first team all-state selection...named Mr. Indiana Football as a linebacker...Indy Sports Nation Defensive Player of the Year...also selected to the Indianapolis Star's Super Team...
That folks is what I considered #winning. Onto part two...
The Closest Thing To Hoosiers We Will Ever Have Again Award (Coolest Boys Sports Story) - Indianapolis Metroplitan Boys Basketball
Here is what we knew about the Indianapolis Metropolitan Pumas heading into their Class A State championship against Triton (a squad playing their third championship game in four years) back in March:
- Entering the 2010-2011 season, Metropolitan (21-6 at the time) had never finished a season with a winning record.
- The Pumas listed eight athletes on their rosters, seven seniors and one freshman. The lone underclassman had only taken three shots all season long.
- Head Coach Nick Reich had known that the squad depended so much on public transportation to get to school, that he was afraid the team wouldn't make the bus for the 10:00 a.m. Regional at Martinsville. So Reich, who lives in a three-bedroom house with his family, laid out the sleeping blankets and air mattresses the Friday night before.
- The team not only managed to survive Southwestern 47-44 in the morning session, but they became a viral video frenzy and ESPN SportsCenter top play when Jerrbryon Graves hit a full-court football heave to drop Shawe Memorial at the buzzer.
-No miracle shots were needed in the 61-50 victory over North Davies in the Semi-State, however the magic this time around came off the court. Knowing that the Metropolitan would have little fan support, 30 or so students from Martinsville packed the fans and became adopted Pumas for the day, cheering on each shot as if it was their own school.
So it was completely understandable that the boys from Metropolitan caught the hearts of Hoosier Hysteria across Central Indiana, and win or lose, they would have been the darlings (well, darlings not named Butler) of State championship Saturday.
What could the Pumas possibly due to one-up themselves? Well they found just a small bit of magic left in that old hat, defeating Triton 59-55 to win the IHSAA Class A State Championship at Conseco Fieldhouse.
Fox 59 Sports' Best of IHSAA Awards: Part Two
From cross country to softball, Fox 59 Sports was there to cover all 20 IHSAA sports throughout the 2010-2011 scholastic year. Check out what were High School Sports Reporter Ken Sothman's favorite moments, stories, and events of the year.
We've upgraded our reader commenting system. Learn more about the new features.