The high school sports landscape offers much: health, fitness, future stars, competition, crazy plays and this, according to Fargo South (N.D.)
cross-country runner Danielle LeNous.
"Hope," the senior told valleynewslive.com
Hearing that single word from such a young person rattles the senses a little, but what she experienced last week during the EDC Cross County Championships makes it understandable.
With approximately 800 meters left in the race, LeNous tore a patella tendon in her knee and collapsed. She was in agonizing pain. "I felt like my leg was getting cut off," she said.
So rather than let her fellow competitor writhe in pain, Devils Lake (N.D.)
senior Melanie Bailey offered a hand and then her back. Bailey got LeNous to her feet, then carried her some 300 feet before help arrived.
It was an act of sportsmanship and humanity reminiscent of the 2008 Great Northwest Athletic Conference college softball game, where two opposing players — Mallory Holtman and Liz Wallace — carried Sara Tucholsky around the bases after she hit a three-run homer but injured her knee rounding first base.
That act gained worldwide attention and eventually an ESPY for Best Moment in Sports
In this case, Bailey sacrificed her season. This was an elimination race. She did, however, finish, more than eight minutes back of the winner. She told reporters she more than happy with how her season ended.
"It's just a race that's the thing," Bailey told valleynewslive.com. "A person is forever, a race just lasts 25 minutes. … If I was helping her pain, then that's all that counted."
Said LeNous: "She sacrificed her time to some stranger she didn't even know. There's still good people out there. There's still hope."