GETTYSBURG, Pa. - For Gettysburg senior basketball player Cory Weissman, just getting the chance to suit up and even start a basketball game was the culmination of three years of hard work. To score a point wasn't even in the plan, until a Washington College coach stepped up and made it happen.
Three years ago, Weissman suffered a stroke during an off-season workout that left him unable to walk for two weeks. He had only played in three games his first year at Gettysburg, scoring no points, so the thought of playing basketball again was certainly a distant one.
Weissman worked hard and through tough work in physical therapy was able to at least get back to practicing with his bullet teammates this season. But just running is a challenge for Weissman, so he hadn't had the chance to play this year.
That changed on Saturday.
That's because Saturday was Senior Day as the Bullets were playing their last regular season home game, so Coach George Petrie decided he would not only make sure Weissman was honored before the game, but that he would start. Coach Petrie coordinated with Coach Rob Nugent of Washington College to make sure after the opening tip, Weissman would get the ball before he would turn it over so he could be subbed out.
That's what happened, and that was it. Or so everyone thought.
Late in the game, Gettysburg was easily beating Washington, so Coach Petrie put Weissman back in the game in the final minute. That didn't escaped the eyes of Coach Nugent or his coaching staff. After a couple of quick possessions, Coach Nugent called time out and told his team to foul Weissman. The plan was simple, but Weissman on the line to shoot two free throws and earn some points.
No one knew of the plan, except the Washington College coaching staff and players, though an assistant coach did run down to the Gettysburg bench to let them know as the timeout ended.
Weissman was fouled and went to the line to shoot two. The entire Gettysburg gym rose to their feet and applauded as Weissman missed the first shot. But that didn't bother him as he easily hit the second one.
So thanks to a classy move by Washington College Coach Rob Nugent and his players, Cory Weissman's senior day not only featured his first ever start, but his first ever point in his career.
The entire scene was immediately noticed by the Gettysburg Athletic Director who sent a letter to Washington College, which said in part:
“On behalf of the Gettysburg College community I want to write and thank you for creating an atmosphere of outstanding sportsmanship at Washington College,” Gettysburg athletic director David Wright wrote. “On Saturday, your men’s basketball coach, Rob Nugent, along with his coaching staff and student-athletes displayed a measure of compassion that I have never witnessed in over 30 years of involvement in intercollegiate athletics.”
Washington College even went further, naming Weissman their Honorary Shoreman Athlete of the Week.
Weissman will graduate next December and with one collegiate point on his resume.
To read more on this story, click on the D3hoops.com story here .
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