Jill's Journal: Taking one (or more) for the team

Jill Meier, Journal editor
I’m a ball magnet.
At least, that’s how I’ve felt during this fall sports season. No matter what sideline I’ve been standing on, crazily so, balls of all sizes have pelted me.
Tennis. Check.
Volleyball. Check.
Soccer. Check.
Softball. Check.
The latter smarted the most, and is the most vivid in my mind and on my shin. Standing inside the fence near the first-base dugout Friday to snap pictures of Brandon Valley vs. Yankton at the state softball tournament, I was smucked once again.
And this one smarted. Really smarted.
With my camera positioned in front of my face, I saw the foul ground ball rolling my way, so, I picked my right foot up off of the ground. Unfortunately, it hit my left shin at somewhat of a powerful pace.
It’s not the first time I’ve been hit this season by a softball. The other was at a home game and I was outside of the fence doing what I do best: Talking. Of course, I heard the “foul ball, heads up” warning, but with my back to the game, before I knew it the ball hit me dead center in my back.
As they say, “No harm, no foul.” Other than my pride, I fortunately, was A-OK.
In my 30-plus year journalism career, I’ve been hit numerous times by errant basketballs and volleyballs. I’ve been mowed over by a football ref and cleated in my right shin by a wide receiver sometime back in the early ‘90s. I have the scar to prove the pain I endured that night, too.
I’ve come to the conclusion that this ol’ weekly newspaper editor needs shin guards, a mouth guard – because I’ve got a lot invested in this smile – and maybe a helmet is warranted when I’m on the sidelines.
I’ll admit I was a little gun shy on the sidelines of Friday night’s football game. I can tell you that a running back in full mode speed isn’t stopping for a gal with camera in hand. Speaking of camera, we photographers are sort of a silly kind of people. For whatever reason, we’re more worried about the camera in our hand than whatever part of the body is being taken out by an athlete or a misdirected ball.
I’m going to do my best to protect my bruised my shin over these final weeks of the fall season. With basketball and wrestling on the horizon, you can bet I’m going to be keeping a keen eye on what’s happening on the court and on the mat. And if for some reason a couple of wrestlers start to roll my way, rest assured readers, I’m simply going to roll over on my back and loudly announce, “Pinned.”


The Brandon Valley Journal


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