In the competitive world of school athletics, it's refreshing to encounter stories that go beyond the scoreboard to highlight the character and integrity of young athletes. Avery Dale, an eighth-grader at Murfreesboro Central Magnet Middle School, embodies the ideals of true sportsmanship. Recently awarded the NFHS Student-Athlete Award of Excellence, Avery's conduct on and off the soccer field has earned her this distinguished honor, presented by the TSSAA and the National Federation of State High School Associations.
Throughout the season, Avery, as team captain, consistently elevated the spirits of her teammates with encouragement and positive reinforcement. Rather than resorting to criticism, she offered constructive feedback and showed her peers the value of approaching challenges with a positive attitude and a willingness to improve. Her leadership extended beyond the mere physical aspects of the game, spotlighting ethical conduct and camaraderie.
A defining moment for Avery came during a team meeting. Without singling out the individual, Avery addressed an inappropriate social media post made by a teammate, which did not align with Central Magnet's standards of sportsmanship. With poise and respect, she urged the removal of the derogatory remark and reminded the team of how essential it is to maintain a positive representation of their school and themselves. Her approach led to the quiet removal of the post, and her discretion preserved the unity and dignity of the team.
Avery's actions serve as a beacon for what sports can teach young people about life. Respect, integrity, and kindness are not only qualities for the field, but also guideposts for everyday interactions. By setting an example, Avery has shown her peers that winning isn’t just about the final score, but also about how you play the game and treat others.
As Avery continues to balance her athletic endeavors with other interests, including her church youth group, travel soccer, school drama club, and more, she demonstrates that being a well-rounded individual contributes to a person's ability to lead effectively.
Join us in applauding Avery for her award and her contributions to the positive culture of school athletics. By encouraging sportsmanship, integrity, and respect, we can transform the competitive landscape into an environment where everyone, regardless of the outcome, can emerge as a winner.
Nominate a student in your school today! Please use the form linked below to share a story about a student-athlete you know who has demonstrated exceptional sportsmanship, integrity, and ethics. If you have any questions about the award or the nomination process, please contact Courtney Brunetz (firstname.lastname@example.org).