Don't knock the thrill of high school volleyball

September 25, 2013

As someone who has never been to a high school volleyball game — too busy with football, fall lacrosse or baseball — I want to congratulate the players, coaches and fans for the incredible varsity volleyball match this week between St. Paul's School for Boys and Boys' Latin. I can honestly tell you it was one of the most exciting and enjoyable high school sporting events I have ever seen.

Before you reject such a proposition, keep in mind that I played high school sports, covered high school sports for a local Massachusetts rag, graduated one high school athlete from St. Paul's and have two sons currently playing sports at Boys' Latin. I have seen my fair share of games. Neither of my sons played in this game so I think I qualify as a truly independent observer of one of the greatest high school sporting events ever.

Both teams played their hearts out, the coaches made substitution after substitution while keeping the integrity of the sport and respect for the opponent foremost. The fans were encouraging of their fellow classmates, respectful of their opposing students and hilarious with some of the most creative cheers this side of a Duke basketball game.

Let the rivalry between these schools live on and may more people come to realize it goes way beyond football and lacrosse.

Oh, one last thing. Want to know the outcome? Find a St. Paul's or Boys' Latin player and ask them. They will be thrilled by your interest.

Steve Gaines, Phoenix

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