10 incredible recent sports stories you should be aware of

10 incredible recent sports stories you should be aware of

In sports, we frequently witness uplifting success tales of athletes who excel and make a name for themselves. But the stories of athletes who overcame adversity to achieve inspiring achievement are what have the genuine flavor and offer inspiration. Fortunately, because there are so many, not every motivational sports story receives a ton of attention.

The following are 10 additional motivational and/or significant sports stories that you might not be aware of, but that are still well worth your attention. These may be based on regional high school sports, the Paralympic Games, or simply be a little bit more obscure in nature.

Occasionally being reminded that sports are full of joyous moments is helpful.


1. Olympic Medal Sold by Olympian to Fund Child’s Cancer Treatment

Piotr Malachowski, a Polish discus thrower, took home a silver medal in Rio. Yet soon after, he auctioned off the medal to raise money for a three-year-old boy’s cancer treatment. Malachowski wanted to earn enough cash, according to Darren Rovell of ESPN, so Olek Szymanski “could receive surgery for his retinoblastoma in New York to try to save the child’s eyesight.”

Malachowski wanted to raise the remaining $66,000 with the action after Rovell reported that the Polish foundation Siepomaga had raised nearly a third of the $126,000 required for the procedure.


According to Rovell, Malachowski posted on Facebook shortly after the auction started that a wealthy Polish couple had agreed to pay the balance due.

2. Shaun Barker Returns After Disastrous Injuries

The comeback of Shaun Barker is one to remember. The English footballer ruptured every ligament and tendon in his knee after colliding with the opposing goalkeeper in 2012 while playing for Derby County FC. “To outsiders, the thought that he would ever return to play professional football again appeared absurd,” Gregor Robertson of Mail Online wrote. And that feeling just deepened as time went on.


Nonetheless, Barker returned to competitive football in August after more than four years and five surgeries. Barker made his Burton Albion FC debut in the 93rd minute of a game against Derby. Barker was playing for a new team at the time.

3. 4 Paralympians outrun the Olympic champion in the race

The hoopla around the Paralympics is typically not as high as that surrounding the Olympics, but in 2016, there was no shortage of amazing stories. For instance, it would be reasonable to suppose that in, let’s say, a 1,500-meter race, a Paralympian would automatically record a slower time than his Olympic equivalent. One would be mistaken.


In the 1,500-meter T13 final, four visually impaired athletes—Algerian brothers Abdellatif and Fouad Baka, Ethiopian Tamiru Demisse, and Kenyan Henry Kirwa—ran quicker times than American Matthew Centrowitz Jr., the Olympic winner.

With a winning time of 3:48.29, Abdellatif Baka set a new record for his division. The Olympic record for Centrowitz was 3:50.00.


4. During the national anthem, the entire high school team kneels

In the sports world, Colin Kaepernick’s national anthem protest has caused a stir, motivating some to join and others to criticize. People should be aware of the consequences of Kaepernick’s conduct outside of mainstream professional sports, regardless of their opinions on the subject. A local high school football team chose to kneel during the national anthem, while the Seattle Seahawks chose to link arms.

Before their game versus West Seattle High School, the football team and coaches from Seattle’s Garfield High School kneeled together as the song began to play. Joey Thomas, the head coach, as quoted by Heather Graf of KING 5: “These were their ideas. The youngsters were the ones that came up with this. Do not misunderstand me; I am completely in favor of it, and that is where my head and heart were, but this is what they desired. And that, in my opinion, is what makes this so unique. Students are in charge of this.”


5. Down syndrome-afflicted HS football coach scores a touchdown

In Novi, Michigan, senior high school student Robby Heil manages his school’s football squad. Robby has Down syndrome. That club gave Heil a chance to flourish on the field in September as a way of paying respect.

Play in a match versus South Lyon East was halted, according to Justin Rose of WXYZ Detroit. Rose joined the contest, received the ball, and ran it into the end zone. The event was observed by Debbie, Robby’s dying mother. According to Rose, she stated: “When I saw him score the touchdown, I lost it and fell to the ground. I’ve always been proud of him for being the water boy—or hydration manager, as some people prefer to refer to him—but today was great; he was Rudy tonight, Rudy.”


6. Paralympic Table Tennis Player Makes an Impression

With his “Nothing Is Impossible” YouTube video, Egyptian Ibrahim Hamadtou became viral in 2014. According to Daniel Politi of Slate.com, he competed in the Paralympic table tennis competition in 2016 as the sole competitor without arms.

Hamadtou, who had arm amputations as a child, uses his feet to serve the ball while holding the paddle in his mouth. Despite the fact that Hamadtou lost both of his matches in Rio, his performance was nonetheless admirable. According to Politi, David Wetherill of the United Kingdom, who defeated Hamadtou, said: “I know I won today, but I think he has displayed far more skill than I have just now.” In table tennis, it is skill vs skill.


7. Football Team Presents Flowers to Leukemia Cheerleader

Leukemia was discovered in Ashley Adamietz, a cheerleader at Foothill High School in Palo Cedro, California, in August. The 57 Foothill players gave Adamietz an orange rose before a September football game—orange to raise awareness of leukemia.

The memorial was organized by player Ryan Caetano, according to KRCR (via Doug Criss of CNN) “We should let her know that we are all here for her since she is a member of the cougar family. We are. I therefore wanted to make that known to everyone, but particularly to her, in light of what she is going through.”


8. Pregnant woman who is paralyzed completes a half-marathon

After being thrown from a horse in 2007, Claire Lomas became paralyzed from the chest down. She used a “robotic exoskeleton” to run a half-marathon over the course of five days in England in September, according to Catherine Thorbecke of ABC News, and in the process, she raised money for the Nicholls Spinal Injury Foundation.

The expectant Lomas revealed to Thorbecke: “With my injury, it is very challenging physically and mentally because I lack core strength and feel nothing below the chest. Even the earth feels cold to me. Every incline, bump, or hill is a significant barrier.” Thorbecke quotes Lomas as saying, “When I commit to something, I am dedicated to give it my best and finish it.”


9. 15 years after a fatal crash, Alex Zanardi wins gold

Former Formula One driver Alex Zanardi suffered a racing accident in 2001 that necessitated the amputating of both of his legs. The Italian has now won four Paralympic hand cycling titles.

The day before the 15th anniversary of his crash, Zanardi won the H5 time trial in Rio, earning his third Paralympic gold medal (after winning two in London in 2012). He also competed in the H2-H5 mixed team relay, winning gold.


10. Damon Hodges Uses Artificial Legs to Play Football

According to Greg Gulas of the Vindicator, Damon Hodges had his legs amputated below the knees at the age of two and has worn prosthetics ever since. For the Ohio Liberty High School varsity football team, Hodges plays defensive end. The Ohio High School Athletic Association agreed to Liberty’s request to allow Hodges to play after the school provided comprehensive information about its safety precautions.

“Many told me that I would never walk or have a regular life, but things have really worked out for me,” Hodges said to Gulas. Gulas also mentioned Hodges’ aspirations to play in the NFL.


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