HJBL names All-Star Saturday after Stottlemyer

March 09, 2012|By MARK KELLER |
  • George Stottlemyer
George Stottlemyer

HAGERSTOWN — In the 47 years he’s been associated with the Hagerstown Junior Basketball League, George Stottlemyer has held practically every possible position within the organization.

Stottlemyer’s selfless commitment and loyalty to the league was rewarded Friday night between games of the junior division’s round-robin tournament at St. Maria Goretti High School.

The league announced it is renaming its day of all-star games in his honor.

The first George Stottlemyer All-Star Saturday will be held next Saturday at Goretti, an announcement that took Stottlemyer, 77, by surprise.

“I was shocked,” Stottlemyer said. “It’s not something I ever would have expected. When you put so much time into something, you think it would be nice to have something like that, but you never visualize it, never figure it would happen.”

The league also announced that it is launching a scholarship program in Stottlemyer’s name that will work in two phases, according to league president John Psillas.

First, the fund will help pay league fees for disadvantaged players. As the fund grows, the league will be able to provide scholarship money for graduates of the league to attend college.

“George pays it forward. As a league, we’re trying to do the same thing,” Psillas said.

Most of Stottlemyer’s years in the league were spent exclusively as a coach. But he was asked in 2006 to take over as the league’s president. He agreed, so long as he was able to continue as a coach.

He stepped down at the end of the 2010-11 season, but has stayed on as a consultant to Psillas and other new officers.

Psillas is amazed at how Stottlemyer was able to keep the league running so smoothly while performing so many duties on his own.

“I’ve been doing this for one year and I feel like I’ve been doing it for 47,” Psillas said. “And everything is in his head, nothing is written down, and he always had five balls in the air at the same time. He knows exactly how to run this league.”

A scholarship fund that will help players being named after Stottlemyer seems fitting. He said all he’s wanted to do as part of the league is help players.

“What kept me coming back all these years was there was always another kid I had to see finish his time in the league,” Stottlemyer said. “You’d have your bad kids or kids you just couldn’t take after a while, but there would always be at least one that showed potential, or one that I wanted to work with again. That’s what kept me coming back.”

The league will be accepting donations to the scholarship fund throughout this week and will announce the amount that has been raised so far next week during All-Star Saturday.

To make a donation, contact Psillas at 301-992-7841.

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