By Lisa Byers
GUYS MILLS —
On June 7, Ethan Moody will make the ceremonial journey across the stage to receive his high school diploma. Soon thereafter, he will bid farewell to Maplewood Junior-Senior High School before advancing onto the next stage in his life.
But first, he’ll leave a lasting mark at his alma mater.
Following football season, Moody remained diligent in keeping in shape and derived his own workout regimen that included consumption of Muscle Milk. A sport nutrition beverage produced by CytoSport, Muscle Milk is said to increase strength and lean muscle growth and help those who drink it recover from exercise.
While browsing on Facebook one day, Moody decided to visit Muscle Milk’s page. There, he came across a promotion for the Muscle Milk Recovery Grant Program.
“It was an (advertisement) to get a grant for your school for whatever you asked,” Moody said. He immediately thought of Tiger Stadium and its dilapidated scoreboard and thought, “Why not?”
“You always see those kinds of things and usually pay no attention,” Moody said. “I don’t know what made me pursue it. I just really thought our school needed the help.”
So Moody became busy writing an essay explaining to the panel at Muscle Milk why Maplewood needed help. The Muscle Milk Recovery Grant Program received more than 600 entries from across the country.
It wasn’t too long thereafter that Moody received a call from a Muscle Milk representative in California, who told Moody that the list of finalists had been narrowed to 100 and that Maplewood High School was still on the list.
“Two days later, he let my coach (Bryan Borkovich) know we had made the final cut,” Moody said.
Muscle Milk selected 22 schools from that initial group of more than 600 to receive a total of $250,000 in grants. Maplewood was awarded $15,000 of that money to go toward the purchase of a new scoreboard.
“I couldn’t believe my ears when I heard the news,” Maplewood Junior-Senior High School Principal Mike Costa said.
“This is an incredible accomplishment,” he continued. “I was elated and extremely proud of him for taking the initiative to give back to his school community.”
According to Maplewood athletic director Casey Young, the new scoreboard costs $13,700 plus shipping and handling costs. Young said the scoreboard has been ordered and is scheduled to arrive sometime between late June and early July.
“We are hoping, if all goes as planned, the scoreboard will be installed and ready to go before the beginning of football season,” Young said.
“The scoreboard itself costs the majority of the funded grant,” Costa said. “Any money left over will be used also towards the installation costs.”
Costa said head of plant and transportation for PENNCREST School District, Pat Connelly, and his staff, Dale Morehead and Lloyd Shuffstall, will assist in the installation of the new scoreboard.
The current scoreboard was a hand-me-down from Allegheny College in 1974, Moody said.
“It’s really, really old,” he added.
Moody was recognized by Superintendent Connie Youngblood and the PENNCREST School Board at its monthly meeting in March.
Moody said his only motive behind applying for the grant was to replace the old scoreboard and to leave a little something behind.
“The only thing I asked for was to get a banner in the gym for 1,000-yard rushers,” Moody said. “That is the only thing I asked for in return.”
Moody became just the fourth player in Maplewood history to rush for 1,000 yards in a season. He had 1,007 yards this past season. He joins Steve Cox (1,556, 1993), Todd Oakes (1,498, 1981) and Gary Zurasky (1,041, 1995).
“As far as I know, they are going to put the banner up,” Moody said.
“Actions like Ethan’s are always appreciated, especially in a time when school funding sources are stressed,” Costa said. “Although Ethan is graduating, he is leaving his soon-to-be alma mater with a gift that will last a long time.
“Hopefully, when he attends football games as a future alumnus, he will see the scoreboard and feel that sense of pride in himself.”
The Maplewood community, after all, is extremely proud.
“Since I have known Ethan and his whole family, they have been involved with their school community through athletics at the school and offering their services with booster organizations,” Costa said. “I believe our educational programs are aimed at encouraging students to not only play an active part in their school community, but also show school spirit and pride in that community.
“Ethan has shown all of us that pride he has in MHS. We are all appreciative of his efforts.”
Lisa Byers can be reached at 724-6370 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
CytoSport, the maker of Muscle Milk, awarded a total of $250,000 in grants to help high schools rebuild and revitalize their athletic programs.
The Muscle Milk Recovery Grant Program received more than 600 applications from high schools across the country. Here are the 22 finalists, including two northwestern Pennsylvania schools, who received grant money:
-Bowie High School, Bowie, Md.
-Canarsie High School, Brooklyn, N.Y.
-Cleveland High School, Seattle, Wash.
-Columbine High School, Littleton, Colo.
-Compton High School, Compton, Calif.
-Denver West High School, Denver, Colo.
-East Detroit High School, Eastpointe, Mich.
-Frederick Douglass Academy, Chicago, Ill.
-Heritage Academy, Mesa, Ariz.
-Hertford High School, Ahoskie, N.C.
-Jasper County High School, Monticello, Ga.
-Leuzinger High School, Lawndale, Calif.
-Lincoln High School, Esko, Minn.
-Maplewood Junior-Senior High School, Guys Mills
-Maryvale High School, Phoenix, Ariz.
-McComb High School, McComb, Miss.
-Newbury Park High School, Newbury Park, Calif.
-Northglenn High School, Northglenn, Colo.
-Oil City High School, Oil City
-Stanton College Preparatory, Jacksonville, Fla.
-River Rouge High School, River Rouge, Mich.
-Waukesha North High School, Waukesha, Wis.