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Hedgesville's Lopez was a man for all seasons all at once

July 08, 2007|By TIM KOELBLE

HEDGESVILLE, W.Va. - Michael Lopez was a sportsman for all seasons during his scholastic career.

He graduated from Hedgesville High School this spring as a three-sport star in football, basketball and baseball and as a star in the classroom with a 3.7 grade-point average.

At the culmination of his senior year, Lopez became a one-man band when it came to postseason all-star performances.

On April 18, he was in the Border Classic basketball game in Winchester, Va., scoring 20 points for the West Virginia team. On June 3, he was in the North outfield going for 1-for-4 in two games in Charleston. Then came the West Virginia-Kentucky basketball series on June 15-16. In a West Virginia win in Logan on June 15, he scored 17 points. The next night, in Pikeville, Ky., he scored 12 points in a loss.

Lopez then prepared for the North-South all-star football game with a week of workouts at West Virginia State in Institute. That game was played on June 23. The previous night, he played Superman, changing back into a basketball uniform for the North-South basketball classic in South Charleston.

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"Playing in the all-stars was a lot of fun and I liked it a lot," he said. "I met and played with new people and it was fun."

The all-star football game might have had the most meaning for Lopez and his family.

His father, Dave, coach of the Hedgesville football team, played in the 1980 all-star game and his grandfather, Frank, played in the 1949 contest.

"I probably enjoyed the week of preparation and playing in the football game the most," he said. "But it wasn't nice losing because my dad and grandfather each won their games. They're one up on me there."

Michael Lopez was a star from his freshman year on through for the Eagles. His only regret is not making more state tournament appearances.

"I'm proud of my high school career," he said.

As a father and coach, Dave Lopez is extremely proud of his son's career.

"He was an extension into three generations and that holds a special place," said Dave Lopez. "As parents, my wife and I are very proud of him to be selected in the games and proud of him because he has really worked hard."

Dave Lopez said his son also was an excellent soccer player as a youth.

"I think it didn't make much difference what he was playing because he enjoyed them all," said Dave Lopez. "People told him to play one sport and concentrate on it, but he enjoys them all."

Lopez, who averaged 15 points per game last year for the Hedgesville basketball team, will now begin to concentrate on one sport.

He has a full scholarship to play basketball at Fairmont State.

"Basketball is my favorite, but I'll miss the other sports," he said.

A four-year honor student, he plans to major in sports management and minor in business law.

"A sports agent ... I'd really like to pursue that," he said.

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