THE MIGHTY TITANS
Nova wins! The Nova High School baseball team won its first state championship over the Memorial Day weekend.
While that may not mean shit to most of you, I'm pretty amped about it. Nova High School in Davie, Florida happens to be my alma mater and I happened to be on the baseball team for a season and a half during my sophomore and junior years. During my rookie year on the team, aside from the very rare plate appearance (I went 1 for 3 with a single, a RBI, a groundout, and a strikeout), I sat the bench and watched as our outstanding team won the district and sectional championships before blowing a late lead and losing the regional game to crosstown private school powerhouse Cardinal Gibbons. A double-play ball through the legs in the last inning cost our Nova Titans a trip to the Final Four and a chance to play for the state championship. Cardinal Gibbons went on to win the title that year.
In the middle of the next season, I started to get the sense that I was never going to be a starter on the team and I decided to quit. I retired from baseball and joined my buddy David Lazarus in the broadcast booth for the remainder of my high school life. In the years since, I've read and heard that Nova baseball has continued a tradition of excellence, reaching the final four twice, but failing to come away with that elusive state title.
Pat McQuaid, the man who made me run laps for joking around and didn't try to talk me out of quitting is still the team's coach, and now he finally has his state championship after 30 years of trying. McQuaid is an excellent baseball coach who knows the game inside and out, teaches it well, and works his ass off for the program. I'm happy for him and I congratulate him and the rest of this year's Nova Titans -- State Champions.
Looks like the student body hasn't changed all that much since my days at Nova.