FAN’s top 5 stories of 2022: No. 5 ‘A lot of their parents never envisioned that their kid would be an athlete’

As 2022 comes to a close, Female Athlete News is sharing its top 5 stories read in its first three and a half months of starting up.

The fifth most read story was a story about a central Pennsylvania field hockey club that partnered with Lydia Smeltz to create the nation’s second All Starz Team.

All Starz field hockey is a USA Field Hockey program that represents disability inclusion. It’s part of the ‘Supporting Hockey Inclusion and New Experiences’ or SHINE initiative, designed to inspire athletes with disabilities to play field hockey. The goal is for athletes to play locally, regionally, nationally, internationally, and ultimately, create a new Special Olympics sport in the United States.  

“Warm-up exercises don’t generally evoke images of one crawling between another person’s legs giggling or smiling constantly that causes your face to hurt.

But maybe a group of 24 “All Starz” knows something that a vast majority of other athletes don’t.

“All that laughing,” Tracy Shirk said. “And people cheering for them. That’s nice, too.”

This isn’t any ordinary bunch. They are athletes with disabilities who played field hockey on Sundays throughout the fall at Lower Dauphin Middle School in Dauphin County.” 

No. 5: ‘A lot of their parents never envisioned that their kid would be an athlete,’ Lydia Smeltz on PA Revs All Starz and what that could mean for athletes with disabilities who play field hockey

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