OT: Your Big Sports Moment

RC1978

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Feb 11, 2008
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I was a two time Gr 3 State Champ in the 880. I was lucky enough to run in the Penn Relays. But my favorite race ever was the 1974 County Championship.

I lived in a blue collar town and back then your parents weren't always at your events, they worked. My father never got home before 10 pm so he never got to see me run because he worked weekends also. I had tough race since my rival and friend from another HS dropped down to race me. I won at the tape and walked over to the side hands on my knees catching my breath. I all of sudden heard "nice race son" and my father saw my first Championship race. He smiled and I knew he had to get back to work. One of my greatest memories.
 

ScarletDave

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Oct 7, 2010
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Senior year at RU, athletic department had a RU athletics dodgeball tournament in the bubble for charity. Teams of 6 from all the RU sports teams. I rounded up 5 other members of the marching band and we threw our hat in the ring (this was during the early Ash years).

First game was against the track team, got destroyed. Next was against softball, we lost again. We were on our way out (thought it was double elimination) when we found out it there was a third game. We went back to find out it was us against the WRs/DBs on the football team.

To keep the tourney moving, the games were timed, and if after 5 mins there were still players in on both sides, it went to “overtime” - 1 played from each team stays in, gets 1 ball in each hand, and no court “half’s” .. whole ring is open. 1-on-1. We decided to go with the strategy of play defense, and try to survive to the whistle to force OT. By some miracle we did it. None of the other games went to OT so all the teams from all RU sports were gathered around our court. 1-vs-1 vs I won’t say who but was a DB in early Ash years. He threw first, missed, then by some miracle threw his second one and missed again ... the whole crowd was going nuts because they knew what was about to happen ... ran him down and nailed him right between the numbers and he dropped it, and the marching band kids beat the football team. Everyone from the other teams stormed the field, it was amazing. Knight Vision interviewer afterwards.

It was a sign of things under Ash that a couple of us band kids were able to take them down. Great night I’ll always remember
 

brad1218

All American
May 4, 2003
8,686
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Baseball state championship finished 4th in the country USA Today. American Legion State Championship beating Brooklawn out of the losers bracket to win it. First ever team from Middlesex County to win a state title. Babe Ruth State Title as a 12 year old. 4 GMC County titles.

Worst memory was losing the state championship my senior year. Can still feel the loss in my stomach. Can barely remember the wins.
 

colbert17

All American
Aug 30, 2014
9,740
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Bangkok, Thailand
6 for 6 in a doubleheader versus St. Benedict's ( a homer, 3 doubles, two singles and a walk).

Winning the Union County Baseball Tournament vs. Union in 1974.
My contribution was 2 for 4 against Frank Araneo who was ( 1st team? ) All State that year

Worst memory was losing the State Finals 3-2 in 1973 at Clarke Field in Princeton. We had the bases loaded with one out in the 7th. I was the winning run on second when our batter hit a screamer to short. The kid caught it and doubled off our runner on third.
A foot either way and I'm sliding across the plate with the winning run in the State Championship. ☹
 
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ScarletteK80

Heisman Winner
Mar 4, 2003
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I played varsity volleyball, softball, and basketball @James Madison H.S. in Brooklyn for 3 years. It was only a few years after Title IX was passed. Being vertically challenged I wouldn't make anything these days. Played 2nd base, and hit like .700. I bunted almost every time. and back then nobody could field the bunts. Got to RU when I was 17, lasted about 10 minutes, and realized I was not "made" for the team.
Best sports moment, walking up to Willis Reed(my childhood sports hero) at MSG pre-game and him putting his arm around me. My 11/14 sits framed here at my desk.
 
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RU848789

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Jul 27, 2001
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Metuchen, NJ
Sophomore year in HS: caught 2 TDs in one game in football, but broke a foot the week before junior year football season - was going to play soccer though, since I hated the coach, so ended up playing nothing. Now that I've been playing soccer for the last 11 years, I really wish I had played in HS.

In a pickup hoops game, rejected the outside shot of the guy I was guarding, who was about my height, then flew down the court throwing down a breakaway reverse jam - the guy I was guarding was Brian Ellerbe, which I did not know until everyone on the court started screaming about it. He destroyed me the next couple of times on offense, lol. Jumping was my main "skill" in hoops.

Tied the course record at the time at the Rutgers disc golf course on the original tees in 1983, shooting 14 under. Finished 2nd in a PDGA tournament there the next week, my best finish in a tourney.

Shot a 73 (2 over) at Rutgers golf course in 1988; was even par through 16 and bogeyed the last two holes on lip-out putts. Best ever round by 3 strokes - was just one of those days, where almost everything went perfectly.
 

mdk01

Heisman Winner
Aug 18, 2011
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1) @zappaa isn’t allowed to respond lol

2) half-court halftime buzzer-beater vs Lawrenceville Prep

lowest: being scored on 6 times by Danny Donigan. In one half.
Funny you should say Lawrenceville. Mine was getting matched up with L'villes 4 year starting All State NJ and HS All American attackman. Gave up 1 assist and took 2 of his passes out of the air and cleared. Frustrating thing our top 2 scorers had been kicked off the team for getting caught smoking (cigarettes) and we still lost.
 

miketd1

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8th grade travel soccer. Won our league and scored in almost every game.

I honestly wasn’t any good. I was just (much!) faster than everyone else.

Such a fun season. Ah to be young again...
 

JMORC2003

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Dec 22, 2008
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Baseball, GMC tournament against a high seed Colonia. We’re up one, bottom of the 7th (we played 7), tying run on third, two outs. I’m playing first base, batter hits a come backer off the pitchers shin and it squirts halfway between him and me. He’s standing there on one leg, so I sprint to the ball, pick it up, sprint back toward first, dive head first at the runner to tag him out before he hits first. Game over. We pull off the upset.
 
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Nowucme

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May 8, 2020
47
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This is his card below - he played and started for a few years with USFL Breakers (he is the QB on the play Marcus Dupree got his knee wrecked - see ESPN 30 for 30 "The Best The Never Was" for that play). He is number 10 in the Dallas pic (from Sports Illustrated). He also had stints with Cleveland, Giants and Canadian teams. He was just a D3 player, but he had a wicked arm - you could hear the ball coming and he could throw 75 yards. I refused to catch for him because he would try to kill me. Phil Simms used to called him "The Sling".. Bill Belichick used have him throw long to burn and expose DBs he wanted to cut.



Very cool, thanks
 

ashokan

Heisman Winner
May 3, 2011
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Camden County 400 Intermediate Hurdles champion. Almost 40 years ago. Still the holder of my high school record in the event.
I know your HS team looks on that record with awe. When I was on my HS track team we had a almost 40 year old triple jump record. We always had really good track athletes so we figured this guy had to be superman. Nobody even knew him because the record was so old. But he had actually gone to Hollywood and in the 40s sang "Ol Man River" in a film.


 
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RU-05

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Jun 25, 2015
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Middle school wrestling. In the first match of the first year of wrestling for myself and the school, as I was putting up a spirited effort while getting shellacked by my far superior opponent, students in attendance applauded me with a good chant during the match.
 
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RW90

All American
Feb 2, 2002
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Junior year, one J.V. game I tripled in the go ahead run off the fence in the top of the 7th.... Only to lose it in the bottom of the 7th on my error. That bus ride home sucked something fierce.
 
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yesrutgers01

Hall of Famer
Nov 9, 2008
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Flag football- game against Rutgers starting team- remember covering both WR,s on my own, they didn’t stand a chance. Oh wait, that wasn’t me..,
 

rubaseball78

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Sep 29, 2005
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Montville, NJ
1) @zappaa isn’t allowed to respond lol

2) half-court halftime buzzer-beater vs Lawrenceville Prep

lowest: being scored on 6 times by Danny Donigan. In one half.
I would actually love to hear what he considers his top moments.

Also, just curious why my previous post on this topic was deleted? It only had my moments; no commentary on anyone else’s.
 

rutger80

Senior
Oct 14, 2013
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Marietta, GA
Not a varsity athlete, but I've been playing in the MSBL for over 30 years. My best moment was in a playoff game where I had 8 assists and no errors at 3rd and then had the winning safety squeeze to advance to the semis. We ended up winning it all.
 

Andy117

Junior
Jan 2, 2013
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About 15 years ago my wife I visited a friend of hers in London and I was told to bring my footy kit (soccer stuff) a term I'd never heard before. Her friend's husband (Afzal) played a weekly pickup match and I was invited to play. I hadn't played soccer in years and never really played much anyway but 2 minutes into the game I nailed a shot top shelf in the corner against Afzal. I'll never forget the look he gave me after that shot.
 

RU in IM

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Great question. Tough one to answer. I’ll go with Coach Frank Burns telling me as we walked off the practice field on 9/8/1983 that I would be starting that Saturday. If not for that, other college football moments would have never happened. Wrestling in state wrestling championship at Jadwin Gym was also a thrill.
 

jordkap

Junior
Jul 11, 2016
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Hitting my first over the fence home run in a game will always be a special moment for me. Made it better that it went opposite field. I was just trying to shoot the gap, but I hit it much better than anticipated
 
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BLewis1968

Sophomore
Feb 3, 2004
484
226
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Won a state AAU title and a Regional AAU title in the 400 (and 4x400), but barely remember any of those races. But I can recall every second of getting walked on the anchor in front of 40,000 people at the Penn Relays. (The kid Ricky Pitts that popped a 47-point was a state champ in the 1, 2, 4 and was Delaware's Gatorade Athlete of the Year for all sports.)
 

robcac26

Senior
Nov 30, 2012
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In 4th grade my friend and I beat the 5th grade tough guys that sat at the back of our bus in a 2-on-2 football game before school.

In 5th grade I beat the class bully in tug-of-war.

In high school I played in a local roller hockey league. We were in the semifinals and our goalie couldn't make it, so we had the coach's son suit up even though he wasn't normally a goalie. We really tightened up defensively and played a hell of a game that ended with me scoring the clinching goal in a shootout. Late in the ensuing championship game, our team up I think 1-0 or 2-1, there was a rebound or something that resulted in the puck landing in our slot, right in front of the league's most dominant player. He was much stronger than me but with all the adrenaline in that moment I was able to lift his stick and muscle him off the puck. Our forwards took it and scored to pretty much seal the championship for us.

On the Rutgers roller hockey team, we were pretty depleted skill-wise our senior year with all of our top players having recently graduated. We were probably about halfway through our season with a record of 1-6-1 and facing a very good Temple team. We were up 3-2 late in the game but they pulled their goalie and were really pouring it on, that clock couldn't tick down fast enough. With about 10 seconds left the puck ends up behind our net. I get to it first and pin it against the boards to kill the clock. Felt like I had their entire team pounding me into the boards, kicking my skate, doing whatever they could to get me off it. After what felt like 5 minutes, the buzzer finally sounded and we completed the upset. One of my wheels was broken in that scrum. I still have it and use it as a Christmas ornament.

A couple years after graduating I played semi-pro roller hockey. Right before the start of the season, one of my former roommates and coworker who had just started playing semi-pro ice hockey had just passed away. I was feeling pretty down from that and didn't do well in my first couple games and was starting to wonder if I even belonged at that level. In the locker room before the third game, I remember staring at the new sticker I put on my helmet with his jersey number and was thinking of the confidence and determination he always brought to the ice. On my first shift I won a battle for the puck along the boards and beat the goalie for my first semi-pro goal. Not to be overly sentimental, but my friend always said he liked getting assists more than goals, and although they announced my goal as unassisted I knew that play probably wouldn't have happened without his inspiration.

But none of that compares to my first season of organized sports when I was the pitcher on my tee-ball team and I struck someone out. The umpire let the kid swing until he hit the ball, but I know I had that strikeout.
 
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robcac26

Senior
Nov 30, 2012
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Just for contrast, I was pitching in an American Legion league game for Saddle Brook, again against Hasbrouck Heights. I was pitching a complete game going into the last inning, winning 4-3. They had men on 2nd and 3rd with 2 out. The next batter bounces one back to me on the mound and I overthrew the first baseman, 2 runs scored and I/we lose the game. Still hurts.
In a championship roller hockey game, I was carrying the puck out of our zone and heard a stick tapping on the floor behind me. I thought it was my defensive partner who was skilled enough to take it coast to coast, so I left the puck and began moving up the rink. Turns out it was the other team's best player. He scored on a breakaway and it ended up being the game-winning goal. I never made a blind pass in my defensive zone again and I always taught my teammates and kids I coached to use your voices when you call for a pass because a stick tap sounds the same no matter who it is.

Senior year at RU, athletic department had a RU athletics dodgeball tournament in the bubble for charity. Teams of 6 from all the RU sports teams. I rounded up 5 other members of the marching band and we threw our hat in the ring (this was during the early Ash years).

First game was against the track team, got destroyed. Next was against softball, we lost again. We were on our way out (thought it was double elimination) when we found out it there was a third game. We went back to find out it was us against the WRs/DBs on the football team.

To keep the tourney moving, the games were timed, and if after 5 mins there were still players in on both sides, it went to “overtime” - 1 played from each team stays in, gets 1 ball in each hand, and no court “half’s” .. whole ring is open. 1-on-1. We decided to go with the strategy of play defense, and try to survive to the whistle to force OT. By some miracle we did it. None of the other games went to OT so all the teams from all RU sports were gathered around our court. 1-vs-1 vs I won’t say who but was a DB in early Ash years. He threw first, missed, then by some miracle threw his second one and missed again ... the whole crowd was going nuts because they knew what was about to happen ... ran him down and nailed him right between the numbers and he dropped it, and the marching band kids beat the football team. Everyone from the other teams stormed the field, it was amazing. Knight Vision interviewer afterwards.

It was a sign of things under Ash that a couple of us band kids were able to take them down. Great night I’ll always remember
That is both an awesome and sad story haha. I was in marching band in high school and we always played pickup games after practice. We had some pretty athletic guys and our football team was terrible, so we challenged them to a game but they wouldn't do it. Looking back, they probably still would have crushed us, but their refusal felt like a win to us.
 
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CJ1987

Sophomore
Oct 21, 2010
445
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Taking the late Darren Winston (RU Grad) deep during a team scrimmage at Rutgers, he went on to pitch in the bigs briefly

Grounding out to 2nd base against Jack Armstrong from Rider, who went on to pitch in MLB All Star game a few years later

Making GMC All Conference baseball team unanimously after my High School AD had my name removed from consideration because of an ejection from a game the week of voting, every coach in the conference wrote me in at my coach's suggestion, then making All County to further piss off my AD

Losing Group 4 football playoffs in OT when they 1st implemented the new OT rule of placing the ball at the 10 yard line and giving each team a chance at scoring, making Honorable mention All County at QB
 
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RutHut

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Aug 11, 2017
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Yeah, just sitting back trying to recapture
A little of the glory of, well time slips away
And leaves you with nothing mister but
Boring stories of
 

RU-Kidding

Heisman Winner
Nov 6, 2001
10,685
397
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6 for 6 in a doubleheader versus St. Benedict's ( a homer, 3 doubles, two singles and a walk).

Winning the Union County Baseball Tournament vs. Union in 1974.
My contribution was 2 for 4 against Frank Araneo who was ( 1st team? ) All State that year

Worst memory was losing the State Finals 3-2 in 1973 at Clarke Field in Princeton. We had the bases loaded with one out in the 7th. I was the winning run on second when our batter hit a screamer to short. The kid caught it and doubled off our runner on third.
A foot either way and I'm sliding across the plate with the winning run in the State Championship. ☹
Colbert - I was at your game - lol My friend had a cousin that played for Union. My high school (Johnson Regional - Clark) lost to Union the year before 1-0 in the 1973 County final. Bob Hughes pitched a 1 or 2 hitter for Union.

My claim to fame - Watchung Conference and Union County champ in the javelin. The meets were held at Williams Field Elizabeth.
 
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alden1

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Dec 18, 2008
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As a youngster: 1) In 1960 winning the Kindergarten 50 yard dash at the La Grande Elem. School (Fanwood, NJ) Field Day getting a blue ribbon and then a kiss afterwards from one of the girls in my class. 2) In 1965 winning the area Punt, Pass & Kick Competition and then that spring winning the Scotch Plains- Fanwood school system 5th grade 50 yard dash competition.

In High School: 1) 1970 coming off the bench to help Scotch Plains HS beat Cranford by leading the team on a late game drive and throwing the winning touchdown pass. 2) Hitting a 3 run homer over the fence in my last HS at bat for Scotch Plains against Berkley Heights. Coach told me after the game that I was the 1st player he had in his over 30 + years of coaching to do a home run trot.

In college: 1972 rushing for over 100 yards in the W. Chester St. College (Pa) freshmen football team's win over Williamson Trade School. I found out the next day that I had broken my left hand in the game and had to wear a cast for 6 weeks.

As an adult: 2002 Coaching my daughters 5-6th grade recreation basketball team. We finished the regular season at .500 and had been routed by the 3 teams seeded higher than us before the league playoffs. We proceeded to beat each of those teams in the playoffs to win the championship. (As an aside, while warming up before the championship game, the league commissioner who was the wife of the opposing teams coach, arranged to have the winners trophies set up at the scorers desk next to their teams bench and the runners up trophies next to our bench. Oh how nice it was to beat them!)
 

yesrutgers01

Hall of Famer
Nov 9, 2008
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Here at a few of mine...
1) Bamtam league Bowling at the age of 11 in 1973. Our team that I was on with my younger brother came in 2nd in NYC. State Tourney was held in LI and it took everything to beg Dad to pony up the $100 for the two of us to go that included hotel, bowling, food. Fri- Sun tourney...we went with no expectations. I believe somewhere around 50 teams. I had a 175 average at that time- my 3 days went as follows- Fri evening - 597 series Sat morning 622 series Sun finals 580 series. We actually got crushed in the finals but to this day, believe that team BS'd their averages pre tourney. I never bowled better but was also so pissed off that I was only 1 pin off of a 3 day 600 average.

2) Fishing- 16 y/o pulled in a 7.6 lb Large mouth bass using a $5 K-Mart rod and real with a rubber salamander - I swear that when I pulled it into the row boat- thought it broke the world record. lol This was in a 3 acre neighborhood pond.

3) Winning the Poughkeepsie IBM Softball league in 1986. Starting SS and super competitive league. Competitive enough to have Bill Robinson attending the award ceremonies.

Always too small to play football. Contact hitter in baseball but great fielder. Or I thought I was until I played softball in my 20's against guys that "only" made it to A/AA level. That is when I realized the difference between being a really good casual league player compared to a professional in any league.
 

tom1944

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Feb 22, 2008
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Baseball, GMC tournament against a high seed Colonia. We’re up one, bottom of the 7th (we played 7), tying run on third, two outs. I’m playing first base, batter hits a come backer off the pitchers shin and it squirts halfway between him and me. He’s standing there on one leg, so I sprint to the ball, pick it up, sprint back toward first, dive head first at the runner to tag him out before he hits first. Game over. We pull off the upset.

What year was that?
 

tom1944

All Conference
Feb 22, 2008
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6 for 6 in a doubleheader versus St. Benedict's ( a homer, 3 doubles, two singles and a walk).

Winning the Union County Baseball Tournament vs. Union in 1974.
My contribution was 2 for 4 against Frank Araneo who was ( 1st team? ) All State that year

Worst memory was losing the State Finals 3-2 in 1973 at Clarke Field in Princeton. We had the bases loaded with one out in the 7th. I was the winning run on second when our batter hit a screamer to short. The kid caught it and doubled off our runner on third.
A foot either way and I'm sliding across the plate with the winning run in the State Championship. ☹

Were those the Union teams with Richie Hand?
 

Phi_1055

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Feb 27, 2006
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Baseball: I played outfield on the school team but for one inning I played second base. Runners on 2nd and 3rd no outs. A soft line drive up the middle and I snagged it with my foot on the bag for the unassisted double play. Fired over to 3rd for the triple play but the third baseman was napping and didn’t get his foot on the bag.

Basketball: Intramural semi-finals late in a tied game and I found myself alone on the perimeter guarding a guy 8 inches taller than me, who went on to score 2,000+ points in college and get drafted by the Knicks. But I had quick feet and managed to draw the offensive foul when he tried to drive past me.
 

AreYouNUTS

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Aug 1, 2001
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Funny you should say Lawrenceville. Mine was getting matched up with L'villes 4 year starting All State NJ and HS All American attackman. Gave up 1 assist and took 2 of his passes out of the air and cleared. Frustrating thing our top 2 scorers had been kicked off the team for getting caught smoking (cigarettes) and we still lost.

OOOOF!!
 

RutgersMO

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Gold Member
Jun 24, 2001
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Heart ~ NJ, Physically ~ OR
As a player not a fan.

Mine goes back to 1968 when I hit what turned out to be my only home run ever. I was a right handed batter and stuck my bat out late and hit a line drive over the 2nd baseman’s head which promptly went through the right fielders legs. I touched em all and my teammates went wild and I was on cloud 9. When I got home from the game - still basking in my glory - my brother was playing “Mrs. Robinson” on his stereo and that song has conflated in my mind with my home run and I think about it every time I hear it. And please don’t bother to point out to me that I really didn’t hit a homer because of the right fielders error - in my 9 year old mind it was a home run and it remains so to this day.

So what was yours?

Played LL back in Belleville circa 1958 ( i was 11). I was playing infield when my coach noticed I had a good arm. He tried me out as a pitcher. I had a good fastball and maybe some sort of natural slider (don't know). Anyway, my first start we won 10-1.

I pitched a NO HITTER... but walked 4 in a row (wild man) and hit one kid in the head (he was ok).

The coach gave me the ball from the game...and called my father. He told him that thrown a no hitter...and struck out 12 -14 (?).

My father said " and how does that help him with his academics" (think he was still upset about the Dodgers moving to LA).

MO
PS The next time we played the same team I was pitching. My head had grown so I was expecting a similar result. I think the other team scored 7 runs in the first inning. As Casey used to say "that's baseball".
 
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MadRU

Heisman Winner
Jul 26, 2001
19,445
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Forgot about bowling.

As an 8yo I had high average in the league, only ten kids in the league.

As an adult I had 2, 700+ series. 711 and 747. My highest league average was a 201.

Bowled a couple 300s in practice, never in a league.
 
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BigWill

All Conference
Gold Member
Jul 25, 2001
3,344
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UCLA vs Syracuse.

1968.

They had just scored to make it SU 13 vs UCLA 7 in 4th Quarter.

Onside kick team I was along the left sideline. UCLA had a left footed kicker. He looked right me.
I knew the rules and the KO was short and I moved up and it bounced up into my arms. I kept on running and it was a 48 yard KO return for a TD.

Final Score; Syracuse 20 vs UCLA 7.

20 + years later it was called oneof the Top 10 plays in Syracuse Football History.