high school sports

Andy Marso / Heartland Health Monitor

 

Familiar sounds filled the air at Blue Valley Northwest High School’s first football practice of the year.

Rock music playing over the sound system. Whistles blaring. Coaches yelling instructions.

But one sound wasn’t present: helmets colliding.

That’s because the Kansas State High School Activities Association, or KSHSAA, approved new rules last year limiting full-contact football practice.

St. Thomas Aquinas

When Riley Pint uncorked a 102-mile-per-hour pitch in February he may not have known the exact velocity, but he knew it felt good. Baseball scouts and coaches, meanwhile, knew they wanted to see more of the St. Thomas Aquinas High School senior on the mound.

Pint says pitching professionally would suit him just fine. "It's something I strive for, to be there [in the MLB] one day," Pint said during a phone interview on KCUR's Up To Date, "It's just a little earlier than I expected, I guess."

As major league teams spend more and more money on pitchers, arm injury rates for the men — and boys — on the mound are becoming increasingly common.

Guests:

Courtesy of KU Athletics (Instagram)

This fall, the three area major college football teams—Kansas, Kansas State and Missouri—haven’t provided much to cheer about. That is, unless you think a bowl game for a team with a 6-6 record grabs your attention. But there’s a sport that’s been a hidden gem in the Kansas City area—volleyball.

Sam Zeff / / KCUR

I wouldn't make a good Royal. 

In Game 4 of the ALDS in Houston, after the Astros hit back-to-back home runs in the seventh to go up 6-2, facing near-certain elimination from the postseason, I gave up. Stopped watching. Walked out of the bar, swallowed the bitter bile gathering in my throat, looked up resentfully at blue sky and thought it might be a good time to rake some leaves.  

Bring on football season, I thought. 

Meet Shelby Winslow, Missouri's Own Katniss Everdeen

Jun 3, 2015
Patrick Quick / KCUR

With the recent success of The Hunger Games book and movie series, competitive archery has become a rapidly growing sport with young women across the U.S. Missouri even has its own Katniss Everdeen — the series' main character — her name is Shelby Winslow.

The Great Olympian Indoor Archery Range in Lee's Summit, Missouri is where the 3-time state archery champion, who is 16, practices her prowess.

 

Keith Allison / Flickr-CC

You’ve seen the boys in blue dominating the field in Baltimore and at the K, but they weren’t always pros.

We take a peek into the past of a few of the Royals… to see how they played in high school.

  • Tim Collins, pitcher
  • Hometown: Worcester, MA

Dave Nordman, deputy managing editor of sports at the Worcester Telegram & Gazette, remembers Collins who "was always the smallest player on his team" at 5'5", but "even for his size, he was just the best player on his team by far." (Collins is now 5'7".)

Daniel Juřena / Flickr--CC

High school athletes in Kansas and Missouri start outdoor workouts for fall sports in August, no matter how hot or humid it is outside. One of the main safety concerns in the heat is dehydration. 

Sometimes it’s not the weather but what the athletes drink that makes the problem worse. A can of Red Bull, Monster, 5-Hour Energy, or any other energy drink before practice can dehydrate an athlete.

Greg Echlin / KCUR

More high-profile major league baseball pitchers have been sidelined by season-ending elbow injuries this year than ever before. But this epidemic is not just a big league concern. Young players, lured by the fastball, are getting hurt, too.

joncandy / Flickr-CC

Three years ago, a Spring Hill High football player collapsed on the field after a stunning play. The cause? Brain hemorrhaging due to a concussion that went unrecognized and untreated. With sports-related brain injuries on the rise, many are calling for major safety reforms and a new approach to handle the problem. 

On Thursday's Up to Date, we discuss how the approach to these types of concussions is changing and check in with the experts who are leading the culture shift in concussion treatment.

Greg Echlin / KCUR

Four basketball games took place last Friday at the St. Mary’s High School gymnasium in Independence for the last time. 

The Catholic Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph announced last month the school will close at the end of the school year because of declining enrollment.  It has been around for 160 years.

The captain of the cheerleaders, a senior, shares her thoughts. Her name is Emily Echlin, the daughter of KCUR sports contributor Greg Echlin.