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Player sees losing team’s pitcher heartbroken, inspires stadium with class act and sportsmanship

Cody Smith and Jack Pilcher are two senior students, baseball athletes of opposing teams, who happened to play in a neck-and-neck final game.

Though still young, they taught us a great lesson in life. Their story will surely touch your heart with the sportsmanship, kindness, and compassion they displayed.

It was an intense final game between two Indianapolis High School Baseball teams, the Zionsville Eagles versus the Roncalli Rebels. They were both fighting for the coveted championship title, and both players of the team are giving it all they have.

The game reached the ninth inning and the score was tied 2-2. The next events will determine who will take the championship home, and so pressure surrounded the atmosphere.

During the last play, the batter of the Rebels’ got a hit off Eagle’s pitcher Jack Pilcher, and the third baseman and catcher collided. Both of them were aiming to catch the ball, however, in their collision, the batter, Cody Smith, reached first base!

With victory within their reach, supporters of the Rebels team were elated, cheering for the Rebels with unconstrained happiness from the stands. The players of the victorious team were on cloud nine and they were hugging and giving each other a high-five.

No words are enough to explain how truly happy they were that their hard work and training paid off. They were the ones who will bring the championship home and make their school proud.

However, as the victorious team was celebrating, Rebels’ Catcher, Cody Smith, spotted something out of the corner of his eye. Cody stopped celebrating and approached the pitcher of the opposing team, Jack Pilcher.

Jack, disheartened and disappointed by their loss, blamed himself. He was lying face-down on the mound, heart and spirit crushed. Thinking and believing that it was his fault that they did not take the championship.

Cody took it upon himself to console Jack.

“I saw the heartbreak and the distress in all their players, but especially him, just lying almost lifelessly on the mound… It just really got to me and I wanted to go over there and tell him everything was going to be alright.” Cody shared in an interview, explaining how he felt seeing Jack in a disheartened state after the game they had.

Soon, Michael McAvene, another player from the Rebels team, joined Cody in consoling and supporting Jack.

“The way that it ended that way, with that kind of sportsmanship, it just topped off the night, even though we lost,”
Jack said, appreciating the unexpected gesture of kindness and support from a player of the opposing team.

The act of kindness extended by Cody to Jack is an inspiring gesture of forbearance. It may seem like a simple act, however, in a world where everyone seems to only care for victories, it sure is reassuring to see that there are still people who are considerate and compassionate of the feelings of others.

Learning how to be kind even to people we are ‘competing’ with is a true reflection of the kind of person we are. May Cody and Jack’s story inspire us to look at the people surrounding us, even in times of our victories, and see what we can do to uplift the spirit of others.

Watch the video and see for yourself the admirable sportsmanship and kindness of Cody Smith, which has inspired the audiences in the stadium and people all over the world.

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