Rival Teams Work Together to Allow Teen With Cerebral Palsy to Score Touchdown

Source: ABC News / JULIA JACOBO

 

Two rival teams in North Carolina displayed the embodiment of good sportsmanship when they worked together to allow a teen with paraplegic cerebral palsy to achieve his dream of playing football.

Lou Stamey, a 15-year-old who is confined to a wheelchair and has limited speech, scored a touchdown at the beginning of Canton Middle School’s football game against Waynesville Middle School on the night of Sept. 22. The game was a precursor to the Friday night game between Pisgah High School and Tuscola High School, one of North Carolina’s biggest football rivalries, which draws up to 20,000 fans annually, Canton Middle School football coach Joshua Simmons told ABC News.

Lou’s love of football was passed on to him by his father, a local referee who called football games at the high school, middle school and youth levels before he unexpectedly died three years ago, Lou’s mother, Belinda Stamey, told ABC News.

PHOTO: Lou Stameys teammates rallied around him after he score a 50-yard touchdown in last weeks game. Simmons approached Lou’s gym teacher and asked her if she thought Lou would be interested in participating in the football game.

“Lou’s very special in our school,” Simmons said. “He brings a lot of joy to a lot of people.”

Simmons created the “Lou Play,” and worked with Waynesville Middle School football coach Robert Sutton to pull it off. In the play, the ball was snapped to Canton’s quarterback and handed to Lou, who held it in his lap. Classmate Brayden West then pushed Lou toward the goal line as Waynesville defenders dived for him.

“Look, Lou, they’re cheering for you,” a teammate can be heard saying to him as they make their way toward the goal.

Once he scored the touchdown, players from both teams rallied around Lou and chanted his name, Simmons said.

PHOTO: The Canton Middle School football team arranged for 15-year-old Lou Stamey, who has cerebral palsy, to score a touchdown at the beginning of last weeks game.

For one special moment, the rivalry “took a backseat to Lou,” Simmons said, calling it “such a cool day.”

For the rest of the game, he held a sign that read “Eat my dust,” made for him by his mother.

“He thought it was funny,” Stamey said of the sign. “He has a great sense of humor.”

Simmons said it took effort from both teams to make the play a success, giving Waynesville credit for going “well beyond” his expectations. Waynesville’s football coach, Robert Sutton, told ABC affiliate WLOS in Asheville that he was glad to be a part of the play.

PHOTO: Lou Stameys sister, Heather Stamey, holds a sign that says Lou Mania after he scored a touchdown during the Canton Middle School football game last week.

READ MORE..

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s