Advocate Editorial Board opinion: Crossroads athletes played great seasons
When Victoria East's marvelous run at the Class 4A state baseball championship ended one win short last week, it signaled the end of another awesome high school sports year.
And what a year it was. Let's give you a "SportsCenter"-type highlight reel:
Starting with football, we had Crossroads athletes set state records - take a bow, Travis Quintanilla - play under intense pressure in championship games and shine as brightly on the field as any athletes in the state.
The winter season brought us thrills on the basketball court, in the pool and on the mat, as the Victoria West girls wrestling team finished fifth at state.
The Titans' baseball run set the tone for spring. But we also had standout athletes shine on the softball field, on the track and tennis courts.
Keeping with the "SportsCenter" theme, let's take a look back at some memorable "sound bites" from the past prep sports year, because, well, sometimes, players and coaches say it better than we can.
"If someone on the street met him, they'd have no idea that he was the star quarterback that beat records set by Graham Harrell and Lake Travis' Gilbert and all that. He's just a very unassuming kid. He's just a pup. He's still a pup. He'll always be the pup to us. He's just a grown-up pup."
- Refugio football coach Jason Herring on record-breaking quarterback Travis Quintanilla
"They welcomed us back in Shiner when we pulled up - just cheering us on. It's a great feeling to know they're behind you whether you win or lose. That's what makes Shiner special."
- Shiner football coach Steven Cerny after the team's tough title game loss
"It's one for the record books, and I couldn't be more proud of them."
- St. Joseph volleyball coach Allyson Griffin after her team's second straight state title game appearance
"It's the best. Fifth in state - it's unbelievable. It's a very cool deal."
- VISD wrestling coach Kerry Iannazzo after the Victoria West girls wrestling team finished fifth at state
"It's a lifelong sport - people play until they're 100 years old," he said. "It's bittersweet - my high school career is over, but I'll keep on playing the game because I love it, not for the medals."
- Ryder Billo, Goliad tennis player, after finishing third at state
"I couldn't be happier as a senior and finishing with a wonderful team and with the work my coach - my dad - and my hurdles coach (David Hill) put in; I couldn't be more thankful."
- Goliad track star Ashtin Zamzow
"We're a team that plays with heart; we come to practice every day and cheer each other on. We're a small team, but we have big hearts."
- St. Joseph senior catcher Mariah Clay on her team's semifinal loss at state
"I just want to give this game up to them. We did it for the people that can't."
- Hallettsville Sacred Heart senior Rachel Saulnier after her team's state title game loss, dedicating its season to two fallen classmates
"It is what it is. We weren't the best team tonight. We didn't get it done tonight. But boy, what a ride - I have nothing negative to say about this team. This team has overcome so much adversity, and I'm so proud of them."
- East coach coach Wes Kolle after his team's state title game loss
High school athletes who wear their hearts on their sleeves and play for the love of the game command our respect.
We applaud all of our Crossroads athletes for their participation, sportsmanship, hard work, all the highlight-reel moments, the highs and even the lows.
The good news for sports fans is we get to do it all over again in just a couple of months.
This editorial reflects the views of the Victoria Advocate's editorial board.