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Swain, Hayesville Display Excellent Postgame Sportsmanship

     HAYESVILLE–It is always great to provide images or stories about examples of outstanding sportsmanship among North Carolina High School Athletic Association schools, which are much more numerous than many people may think.

     Recently Hayesville and Swain had a hard fought soccer game between two schools that compete against each other in many different sports.  A fan observed this at the end of the contest, and then contacted school officials about sharing this story, which follows:

     “I am a soccer parent and have enjoyed watching our teams play this season.  However, at this last game for our Hayesville team, I witnessed something that I wanted to share.  Don’t worry – it is a good story.

     “At the end of the game each team met on the 50-yard line to do the customary ‘good game’ handshake.  After the line, the teams joined together at the center of the field to end the evening with a voluntary prayer. 

     “As the teams were gathering, one of the Hayesville players was trying to get to the sideline for a bottle of water, but was stopped to come back to the gathering on the 50.  As he went back to where the teams were gathering, one of the Swain players who had noticed this went in search of a water bottle from their team water bottle caddy.  He found one, came back to the Hayesville player and gave it to him. 

     “As the teams began to kneel to pray, this same Swain player placed his hand on the back of the Hayesville player he had just offered the water to, and left it there during the entire prayer. 

     “As the prayer ended and the teams headed to their sidelines, the two players turned and shook hands.”

     The information ended: “Too often we hear the bad sportsmanship stories from athletes.  I wanted to share a display of good sportsmanship that this young man showed.  I was proud of both teams that night.”

      Congratulations to both Hayesville and Swain for their great display of sportsmanship; we appreciate hearing this kind of good news.