Well, that's a wrap. Another school year has come and gone, but this one was pretty special in my opinion.
It ended with Southmont's run to the state championship game in softball. It was heartbreaking to see the girls after losing the game in the bottom of the seventh. But what an experience they had! They'll remember that journey forever.
Another awesome part of the spring was Jason Christensen making it back to state as a junior for Southmont. The high jumper made it as a freshman, got back this year and beat his seed by about nine spots. Pretty awesome spring for the Mounties.
This season was also memorable for another reason, which isn't a positive. This year ended a pair of streaks for Crawfordsville baseball (10 years of Sagamore Athletic Conference championships and eight straight sectionals). So end of an era, right? Don't think so. On paper Crawfordsville is just going to keep getting better over the next couple years. The scary thing about that is that most of the time the Athenians exceed what they look like on paper.
Going back a few months, there was another run that made this a special year as well. The Crawfordsville boys' basketball team was unbelievably fun to cover and be around. The Senior Six proved to be a great group of kids and it paid off with championships. They won the Sugar Creek Classic, the county title and their first sectional in more than two decades.
The fall was highlighted by a pretty phenomenal football game that decided county. Southmont made the trip to Linden and won in overtime on a bootleg sweep. That was the highlight of Devon Burton's senior year. Just a few weeks late he suffered a badly broken leg and was never the same on the basketball court. He got to 1,000 points in his career, but the explosiveness was never there after the injury.
There really was a lot to be excited about in Montgomery County this year. Crawfordsville tennis won the conference and sectional. The Southmont boys' golf team made it to the regional. I could go on and on. But if I do, I'll leave something out - and I don't want to do that.
The county definitely garnered some attention with their athletic performances this season. It will be interesting to see how the teams build on that and if a culture of chasing championships becomes more wide spread. Everyone wants to earn some hardware, but very few teams / individuals actually put in the time and commitment needed to get to the highest level. Others just wish it would happen.
Wishes don't bring home trophies. Workouts at 6 a.m. bring home trophies. Blood, sweat and tears bring home trophies.
The standard has been raised with some outstanding performances this school year. Hopefully the teams are putting in work this summer so that they can rely on their hard work paying off instead of hoping their wishes come true.
Neil Burk is the sports director at The Paper of Montgomery County. You can reach him at email@example.com or drop him a line at 361-0100 ext. 31