The Big 5 schools apparently could learn a thing or two from some of the Little 4 schools.
Last week, the St. Bernard’s Crusaders received the H-DN 2023 Spring Sportsmanship Award, following in the footsteps of Northcoast Prep and Ferndale, which won the fall and winter awards, respectively.
Last year, the H-DN Student Athlete Advisory Council proposed recognizing the schools that display the best sportsmanship at H-DN events and the league voted unanimously to move forward with the program.
The awards are based on the input of officials, coaches and school administrators throughout each season, with officials evaluations accounting for 40 percent of the overall score for each school, while coaches account for 30 percent and administrators account for 30 percent.
And when the final scores were tallied this spring, it was the SB teams — baseball, softball, track and field, boys golf and boys tennis — that led the way.
“There is so much to celebrate in Humboldt and Del Norte counties and our student-athletes help remind us how special we have it on the North Coast,” St. Bernard’s Principal Paul Shanahan said.
Among the examples of sportsmanship the Crusaders displayed this spring, seniors Jason and Tyson Meyer showed up early at South Fork High School for a baseball doubleheader and offered to help the Cubs coaches prep the field for the game.
The Crusaders also stepped up when they offered the Fortuna and Del Norte baseball teams a dry field to play on during a particularly wet spring here on the North Coast.
Shanahan said he believes every H-DN track and field team deserves credit for how they conducted themselves this season.
“I think all H-DNL track coaches deserve the Sportsmanship Award,” he said. “The culture of helping all athletes permeates every meet. PRs are the goal.
“I’m proud of our softball, baseball, and track coaches and athletes.”
The Crusaders received a pennant recognizing the achievement before the Charlie Lakin Baseball Tournament championship game at the Arcata Ball Park on Friday night.
The league will also honor the school that has displayed the best sportsmanship throughout the year at an upcoming rally.
More details on that to come.