It was the summer of 1999, and Nick Adenhart and I were both just beginning to hone our separate crafts.
Adenhart was a 12-year-old pitcher on the Halfway Little League All-Star team, and even at that young an age, his name already was being used in tones of awe. “Hey, are you going to see Adenhart pitch tonight?” Soon enough, that question would become the chorus of Washington County baseball.
I was a 19-year-old part-time sports correspondent for The Herald-Mail, armed with a notepad, a scorebook, a love for sports, some ability to put words together (how much ability is up for debate), and not a whole lot else.
I first saw Adenhart pitch at National Little League in a Maryland District 1 11-12 All-Stars playoff game. Everyone there told me before the game that I was in for a treat. They were right.
Whether indoors or outdoors, the Maryland High School Track & Field state meets are high up on the list of sporting events I love.
Over the course of six hours, you get to see everything that makes sports great: The spirit of competition, the drive and desire to be the best, the drama and passion. There’s triumph to delight in and heartbreak to feel for. There’s athletes digging down and finding more than you — and sometimes even they — ever thought they had.
That last sentence sums up what Williamsport’s girls achieved Monday in winning the Class 1A indoor team title. The Wildcats are a talented bunch. So was Digital Harbor. But Williamsport just wanted it a little more, and the Wildcats showed that in the very first event, as colleague Andrew Mason said in his story.