Coupeville team takes first in sportsmanship

"The Coupeville football team will be recognized for more than its record, physical skills or dominance on the field at half time of the boys basketball game against Archbishop Thomas Murphy Friday. The team will be recognized for something that a lot of coaches and players forget is important for prep athletes to learn, respect for other teams, officials, coaches, fans and the game.It is something that we stress as a coaching staff, said Coupeville's varsity head football coach and athletic director Ron Bagby. Other schools and the community will look at this. It is really positive.The John Trotto Sportsmanship award is given to the team that most exemplifies great sportsmanship on the field.Since we have made it known to the schools there has been more of an emphasis on sportsmanship, said the leagues current Assigning Secretary and a Northwest A official, Larry LaBree. I think we have been giving it out for almost 24 years now and we like the fact that we can give an award for good conduct. The coach over there (Bagby) is a real gentleman. He added that the actions of any coach will reflect greatly on how their players act and conduct themselves on the field. LaBree also commented on the fact that a lot of teams pick captains strictly on their physical traits, where as Bagby had picked captains that had both great physical traits and good leaders.I knew that we had been nominated but I didn't know we had got it, said Coupeville's starting quarterback, captain and senior Noah Roehl. I think that it is nice that we got it.Along with Roehl, Bagby gives credit to Jake Henderson another captain for the Coupeville football team. We give our captains a lot of responsibility, said Bagby. They understand what is expected of them. After every game officials rated teams on a scale from one-to-five, five being the best, for how the players and coaches acted on the field. Receiving a one meant that a player was ejected, joked LaBree. But if you got a one you were pretty much out of the running. Trotto, the man for which the award is named, was a former official for the league and assigning secretary before he was stricken with cancer and pasted away. The award is given in his name because he exemplified sportsmanship on the field and off. "

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