Perfect Example of Sportsmanship

This is it. The state championship. Runners wait all year for this one race. Only the best are here – the best teams, the best runners – all competing for a state championship. You ran all those pre-season miles, you did all that speed work during the season and you pushed yourself thru invitationals, districts and regional meets.

It’s all come down to this. You round the final turn of the state championship. Less than 100 yards to go. You kick it into high gear. Can you picture the scene? It’s happened millions of times over countless years  in state meets across the country.

Only this time, something is different. This time something is in your way. No wait, it’s someone. Crawling on the ground is a runner from an opposing school. Other girls are running around her. Without thinking… without hesitation, Grand Rapids West Catholic runner, Maggie Duba stops… bends over… picks her up… says words of encouragement… locks arms with this unknown runner… wills her to the finish line… they finish the state meet one after the other.

“I was like, you got to get her up, like she’s got to finish. This is also like way too close for her” not to finish, Duba said. “I wanted her to be able to finish, so I just, I kind of grabbed her and talked to her a little bit and was like, ‘You can’t not finish,’ just kind of putting that into her mind.”

Maggie Duba’s mother is also her daughter’s coach. As this coach and mother waited at the finish line for her daughter to maybe achieve a personal best time, she saw her daughter exemplify a different “personal best.” As the crowd applauded this selfless act, Coach Duba grew more and more proud of her daughter for showing such sportsmanship to a complete stranger.

In the time that it took Maggie Duba to help Sarah Storey from Chippewa Hills, 10-20 runners ran past them to the finish line. However, after the race, Maggie had zero regrets. “I’m sure she (Sarah) would’ve done the same thing for me, too,” Maggie said with a sense of satisfaction.

Your Turn: Do you think Maggie did the right thing by helping this runner cross the finish line or should she have just focused on finishing the race?

Comments 59

  1. I would have helped her because she was in front of me the whole race and she deserves to make it past the finish line before me.

    1. Maggie did what she thinks was right, and i would have done the same thing. Even if the person isn’t from you school you can still help them if you see they are struggling.

  2. Honestly if I was in first place I would’ve probably ran past her to secure my championship, then came back for her. However if I wouldn’t have place I would without hesitating pick her up and finished together.

  3. I wish I could say I would help her but I know in reality that I would probably pass her and comeback for her after that. However I think it was an honorable thing for her to do have helped her opponent when she was so close to finishing.

  4. Oh I would’ve finished the race if I were in first place but I would definitely help because we are all there for the same reason and to accomplish the same goals

  5. I think she did a very honerable thing and whether it was right or not is her decision down to it. She chose to do, so it was right for her to do it. Not alot of people can say they would do the same so it is a proud accomplishment in its own way

  6. To be fair she would’ve have fairly won. It wasn’t her action that resulted in her on the ground. I would’ve finished and comeback.

  7. That was a very ethical thing to do i don’t think I would do that I think I would have finished the race and then gone back

  8. That was a very good thing to do i don’t think I would do that I think I would have finished the race and then gone back to get her

  9. I think that Maggie did do the right thing in helping the other runner, but I do not think I personally would have done that in the state championship unless I knew I was going to lose.

  10. Yes, she did the right thing. She wasn’t obligated to do so, but it is still honorable to put fellow athletes before winning. Especially when she encouraged her while helping.

  11. Maggie did what she thinks was right, and i would have done the same thing. Even if the person isn’t from you school you can still help them if you see they are struggling.

  12. The sportsmanship was shown very well in this article. For me personally I think that I would have pushed through and fished the race off myself then have gone back to help them. But at the same time in the heat of the moment everything is different

  13. Yes she did the right thing she didn’t have to help that girl but she knew it was the right thing to do. She wasn’t just thinking about herself and that showed. She still finished the race it might not of been her best time but she helped someone else finish.

  14. To be honest, if it was for first place I probably would’ve finished the race and then gone back to check on her, but if I’m not going to be a top finisher I would absolutely help her finish .

  15. I think that it would have been really hard to decide to help up the girl even if I was at the end, but deep down I would have known that it was the right thing to do.

  16. I think that she definitely did the right thing in helping the other runner to the finish line. She didn’t know anything about her but to get to the state championship takes a lot. If she was in their shoes she would have wanted someone like her to help her.

  17. I think that i would’ve just finished the race but in her situation i think it was a great choice to put other people first instead of her own needs.

  18. I think that i would’ve just finished the race but in her situation i think it was a great choice to put other people first instead of her own needs.

  19. Yes I think it was the right decision even though it might have been hard to decide at that moment. But in the end, it was a good choice.

  20. I would have helped her finish the race because it is the best thing to do. Even if I was in first place, sportsmanship is more important than winning.

  21. Personally I would have helped her because it’s the right thing to do, she worked her butt off to be there at the state championship, I knew if I went there just to get hurt, and not even finish the race I would be heart broken because if I worked all the way there to not finish. So why would it just be me thinking that. I would help her finish so she could reach that goal

  22. Maggie did the right thing. If what happened to Sarah happened to me, I would be devastated. And then to see someone stop running and help me to the end I would be so happy. Sports are supposed to be fun, and helping each other succeed is how everyone is able to have fun.

  23. I believe Maggie did the right thing by helping someone else finish and if I were I in her shoes, I would attempt do the same.

  24. Maddie did the right thing by helping her competitor finish because being an athlete takes athleticism but also being a good person. Her completion of the race would not have been as satisfying had she chosen to help out someone in need.

  25. I would have helped because even though she could have got a better place but sometimes it’s not always about that u have to help others aswell

  26. I think she did the right thing, because building others up is not only a good look in front of the coaches, but it’s also just the right thing to do from your heart. I believe you should only help the other person if you truly feel like you want to.

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