The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Sports

March 21, 2014

A Don McCormack column: True or not, many scenes hit the heart

Yours truly saw a question posted online the other day that caught my eye as being a bit intriguing, so I posted it on my Facebook page.

The question:

What is your favorite scene from a fictional sporting event, albeit it movie, book, etc.?

I received a good number of responses and they are interesting.

So, Loyal Readers, check out what I received in about a 12-hour span and feel free to send me yours (you can reach me at the email address at the end of this column) and I’ll update with another column.

Here are the responses:

  • Mark Powers — “Rocky Balboa,” because in the original ending, the fans shouted “ROCKY! ROCKY!” In the alternate ending, they shouted, “THANK YOU! THANK YOU!”
  • Rusty Webker — “Major League.” Because it was the Indians winning against all odds.
  • Steve Cunha — “Hoosiers.” Specifically, the scene were they are in the arena before the championship and Gene Hackman pulls out the tape measure and measures the height of the rim, letting his kids know it’s still the same game, no matter how big the stage.
  • Keith Whitman — The father and son playing catch in “Field of Dreams” really struck a chord with me as I’ve never been afforded that privilege. But, I think my favorite scene is from “A League of Their Own,” when Tom Hanks says, “The hard makes it great.” I’m pretty sure I’ve used some version of that quote to every team/kid I’ve ever coached.
  • Michael Kelly — (That scene from “A League of Their Own”) is the best pep talk ever.
  • Stefanie Hamski — (The original) “Bad News Bears,” when the stream of racial slurs is spewed. Also, in “The Rookie,” when the kid taunts the pitcher. Two things that are taboo today!
  • Carl McElroy — How about “Friday Night Lights?” You loved the team and the story and the will to come back and never give up, but in the end, they lost and should still feel proud and winning isn’t everything like every other movie where it ends well. That doesn’t happen in life and there are more valuable lessons!
  • Anita Moore — This is a no brainer, “Hoosiers.” Jimmy hits the final shot and the small-town school wins it all!
  • Larry Balmer — “Field of Dreams.” The scene where the doctor has to make the decision as to cross the foul line. He knows that if he does, he cannot come back. Makes you think does he cross it because he is a doctor or just lives baseball that much. I think we all wish we could cross that line some days and just go back to playing baseball all day long. As far as the doctor, I think he crossed it because he did miss playing baseball.
  • Julie Herendeen Travis — “Rudy.” The moment when the coach finally crumbles to the chanting stadium and sideline and puts Rudy in.
  • Kelly York Summers — Also from “Rudy.” When all the players throw down their jerseys on the coaches desk in protest to letting him play.
  • Michael Mirando — Can we cite the incredible athletics of John Holmes? Oh, FICTIONAL... I was stuck on inspirational!
  • Dwayne Cunningham — “Friday Night Lights.” “You want to win? Put Boobie in!”
  • Diana Grow — “Blind Side.” The scene when Mom confronts gang and says, “when you mess with my son, you mess with me and I’m always packing!”
  • Mark Mirando — My favorite scene in the movie “Hoosiers” was when Jimmy tells the coach, “I’ll make it.” He then proceeds to get the ball, lets the clock run down and puts up a pullup jumper from the top of the key and hits nothing but net for the win in the state championship game. It’s the kind of movie that reminds small towns like all of ours around the county that anything is possible.
  • Rich Kelly — My favorite sports movie take is an old one, from “The Babe Ruth Story,” starring William Bendix. Regarding the called shot from the World Series against the Chicago Cubs, watching the arm pointing repeatedly toward wherever it pointed, twice in each scene of a pitch, easily one of the most campy and laughable scenes ever for a film depicting a real moment, or so rumor would have it. Whether or not this actually happened is so open to debate, since we don’t really have any pictured record of it, and Ruth himself, to my knowledge, didn’t refute it completely, watching that arm is just hilarious.
  • Michelle Becker — “The Waterboy.”
  • Jordan Hommes — I would have to say, “The Sandlot,” where the team members get the chance to meet the owner of “the beast.”
  • Carrie Beth Mabry Runnion — “The Champ.” When little boy was crying (Ricky Schroeder) or in “Facing the Giants.” When coach gets down on the ground, encourages his player the whole way down the football field as the player (he is trying to earn respect, and have him become a positive leader for the team), carries one of the players on his back as he does the bear crawl the whole way! A fantastic movie, a truly moving scene!
  • Alicia Preston — From “Hoosiers,” when they get to the state championship facility and has the players measure the rim and free-throw line. “I think you’ll find these are the same as our gym back in Hickory.” From “A League of Their Own,”  when Dottie is leaving after her husband returns. After stating, “It just got too hard” to Jimmy, he has the best quote ever — “It’s supposed to be hard. If it wasn’t hard, then everyone would do it. The hard is what makes it great.” Also from “A League of Their Own,” in the end credits, they show one of the “old” players arguing with the umpire. His quote is something I lived by as a high school and college athlete. “Yesterday, it might have been a ball. Tomorrow, it might be a ball. But today, it was a strike!”
  • Lance Hammond — The movie, “Remember the Titans.” The Scene,  When the Titans’ coaches realize the referees are on the take and the defensive coordinator confronts the refs and tells them to keep it fair. He then pulls his defense to the side and says, “I want you to blitz all night! I don’t want them to gain another yard. If they cross that line of scrimmage, I’m going to pull every last one of you out!” The team proceeds to destroy the opponent. I can hear Coach (Matt) Bradley saying these words, only with a little more spit flying and intensity in his voice. Great scene in a great movie. I show the movie to my fifth graders every year when we do our Civil Rights unit. They love it.
  • Matt Bradley — Lance, that is my second-favorite scene from the greatest movie of all-time! My favorite is Coach Boone saying,  “A water break? Water is for cowards. Water makes you weak. Water is for washing blood off that uniform and you don’t get no blood on my uniform. Boy, you must be outside your mind! We are going to do up-downs, until Blue is no longer tired, and thirsty.”
  • Dana Sulonen — “A League of Their Own,” during the final game. Or when Marla Hooch sings karaoke.
  • Shannon Mellin — “Glory Road,” when I thought that the young men from Texas had lost and their journey was over, but the referee made the call that the young man from (Kentucky) had stepped out of bounds. I love that movie!
  • Pat Ryan — “Remember the Titans,” when Coach Boone tosses the banana to the racist jackass of a coach. Crappy time in history, but great story.
  • Katharine McNair — The entire movie of “Hoosiers.” Especially, at the end, with the coach’s voice echoing in the gym while the boy shoots hoops and the camera focuses on the championship team photo — love it!
  • Bill Lipps — Ninth inning in the movie,  “For Love of the Game.” Kevin Costner plays Billy Chapel and Vin Scully announcing — chills!
  • Deb Myers Collins — I’m a JHS football coach’s wife. .I must pick a football movie, my personal favorite? “Remember The Titans.”  When coach has everyone run in the middle of the night till morning, after hours of blood, sweat and tears, the team and coaching staff arrive to the old battleground of the Titans. This drill, unified the team and solidified friendships to last a lifetime.

McCormack is the sports editor of the Star Beacon. Reach him at donmac@suite224.net.

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