Best Teammate 2006
  Monsignor Bonner's Colin Liberatore, a basketball/baseball player, is the winner!!. He collected 57 points to edge North Catholic football player Dan Shields in what came down to a two-man battle. Wood's Chris Crawford (basketball/baseball), Dougherty's Kellen "Bubba" Kemp (football) and Bonner's Brian Meagher (baseball) finished 3-4-5.  
   We had 18 voters total for 270 points. Liberatore was No. 1 on seven ballots and second on three more. He appeared on 14 of the 18.
   The following also received first-place votes: Shields, Crawford, Kemp, Meagher, Ryan's Joe DeCree, Judge's Matt Smyth and C-E's Finn Skovdal.
 
These guys finished as high as No. 2 on ballots (aside from contestants already mentioned): Mike McKnight and Fawaaz Fields.
   Thanks to everyone. Also, I hope everyone who was nominated feels extremely proud!!  Colin has received his plaque. Click here for photos of the presentation.
   Ted 


    

Colin Liberatore
Best Teammate '06!!
(Look below
for more pics!)

Return to TedSilary.com Home Page

Click here to see Best Teammate 2001, Bryan Cole (Dougherty)
Click here to see Best Teammate 2002, Ameel Johnson (West Catholic)
Click here to see Best Teammate 2003, Ken Wlodarczyk (Northeast)
Click here to see Best Teammate 2004, Matt Malloy (La Salle)
Click here to see Best Teammate 2005, Matt Yankowitz (Washington)


Who is the best teammate in the Public, Catholic or Inter-Ac Leagues? And why?
    Is he always upbeat? Does he never stop hustling? Is he always dependable in the clutch? Does he always know just what to say in dark moments? Does he tell great jokes? Does he set a proper tone in practice?
    Nominations for stars, "mediums" or lesser lights are encouraged. Once again: Only seniors are eligible. Athletes in any sport are eligible, though I'd imagine the winner will likely come from a sport we cover on a regular basis. 
    We'll take nominations through May 19, have the TedSilary.com squad reach a decision and announce a winner shortly thereafter. I will spring for a handsome trophy or plaque.

     We ask baseball players to remind basketball and football guys that the contest is on, in case they haven't visited the site in a while.
    We want thoughtful nominations. We will go entirely on what is said in the nominations, not the number of nominations. (I might consult coaches to be sure that everything said about a kid is on the money.)

    Thanks for participating!!
    -- Ted Silary
    P.S. -- You may make nominations anonymously.

Colin Liberatore . . . Best Teammate '06

Click here for more photos . . . plaque presentation.

Colin runs off field with protege Tim Dougherty.

NOMINATIONS . . .
(Send to silaryt@phillynews.com)

For JOE DeCREE, of Ryan football

    I wanted to nominate my teammate Joey "Paco" DeCree. This guy puts the stand in stand up guy. I was always inspired by his never say die attitude and how he was our leader on and off the field. I remember playing pound ball with him over for the Spartans and our coach (Coach Finkle) used to say that Joey DeCree was so tough that he'd run through a wall. ha well I don't know about that coach but boy Joey is definitely one tough guy. This year he earned first team all catholic honors. The whole neighborhood was so proud, he actually had a block party to celebrate on his street called Paco Palooza '06. I wish Joe the best of luck next year at Penn State University.
-Doug Andrews '06

For BRIAN MEAGHER, of Bonner baseball

  When I sat down to gather my thoughts on who I thought was the definition of the "Best Teammate", one name/player/friend came to mind... and that's Brian Meagher ( The Whizz). I've been playing with Bri now for a few seasons Ted, and let me tell you, never have I played with someone who knew the game inside and out as Meags does. Kid, knows exactly where everyone should be, in every possible situation, and takes on his leaderships role in directing people to where the need to be. Brian off the field though, is a million times better than Brian on the field. He's got the characteristics I look for in a good teammate, and I'ms ure everyone else can testify to this. He puts everyone else before him, the least selfish person I've ever met with the excception of my Mom. Also, for Bri to be such a good player, he maintains the humbleness everyone loves, and it rubs off on everyone else when they see someone as good as Meags is ont he field, to be such a nice, down to earth guy.. on top of it all. He hasn't done it all by himself though. His Mom, Tracey, has done some job in raising this little physcial specimen..saint....angel that we like to call Brian Meagher.
Oh, and also, After every time I hit a home run, Bri takes me out to Rita's and buys me a cherry/vanilla Gelati. This just shows the type of guy he is, always doing little things like this showing you he cares about you. Ted thanks for your time.
Tim Dougherty
Bonner '07

I would like to nominate my teammate Brian "Whiz" Meagher. Brian plays every
play like its his last, he's a great guy and a great team player. He is not
a leader who is a ra-ra type of guy, he does his leading with his glove,
bat, and attitude. Any time i'm having trouble in any phase of the game he's
right there to pick me up and tell me i'm fine keep your head up. It might
not seem alot but when you have no one else picking you up it feels good. He
just not that for you at baseball but in any life situation. I LOVE YOU WHIZ
--Vince Sculli 06'

  I would like to nominate Brian Meager from the Bonner baseball team. He is a great kid who is a nice guy to everyone and hates no one. He works very hard for the sport, and studies it so well. He is such a great kid and is there for any one on his team when ever needed. He loves baseball more then anyone and is dedicated. He truly leads the team by the way he plays and the way he helps other. Ted, thanks.
- A bonner student

For MIKE McKNIGHT, of Judge football

  Mike McKnight of Father Judge is the best teammate. Mike was a three year starter at center for the crusaders. He was our captain on and off the field. He anchored our O-line this year, which had a good season. Besides being a great player, Mike was a great guy off the field. On the field he was the most serious person, but off the field he was very funny and loose. He cracked jokes all the time. In very hard practices he would make us laugh in huddles when we were tired. He would make the coaches laugh too. He made practices fun and I looked forward to go to practice as long as Mike was going to be there. He was a very good player and a great person. I looked up to Mike because he worked hard and was our best leader because he lead by example.

For DAN SHIELDS, of North Catholic football
  I am nominating Dan Shields from North Catholic Football. There is no way to tell how much Shields did for our team this year. He was our center piece, he would keep us in check at practice when we would fool around and goof off. He always put the team ahead of himself, Shields was the perfect Captain, he would go to war for all of us and he wouldn't hesitate to let us know if we were out of line. Shields was a true Falcon he played ever play of ever game with everything he had and more. I have so many memories to share but I will only share a few. During the judge game he hurt his knee very bad and we thought he was out for Roman but he came back to practice and played in the game through all of  the pain we may have lost but he was a warrior and played through it, not for himself but also for us. But the best memory of him was the Frankford game, before it he told us to not be afraid or let anything keep us back, after the game i saw him do something i never saw before he told us that he loved us and that it was all worth it and he started to cry, we all told him that one was for him and it was. Dan was the reason we stuck together through all the losses and he was the reason some of us didn't quit.
-- A Falcon Football Player

  I am nominating Dan Shields of North Catholic's Football Team for Teammate of the Year. Dan was a great teammate and leader. Even though we did not have a very successfull season Dan always got the team hyped up for the games. Dan was battling through injuries all year, still giving 100% on every play in practice and the games. He really played every play like it was going to be his last play ever.
-anonymous
 
  I am writing to you for the nomination of Dan Shields. In my eyes Danny is one of the best teammates that has come across my path, he was always there for anyone of us.  Danny was one of the four captains, and he truly was a captain, one and off the field.  Danny was one of the reasons that I didn't give up on the year, he was always there lifting up our spirits during this difficult year. If Danny saw that you were down in any way, he was there to offer his support.  During the morning before the Frankford game, he motivated our whole entire team's morale.  He was one of the reasons why the team was so pumped up before the start of the game. It wasn't just a little kick to get us started, he was keeping us up the entire game.  Danny was all over the field, not just on the o-line, but also helping out on defense.  Danny is truly the most deserving of this award because he is truly North Catholic's Player of the Year. He will truly be missed for the upcoming season.
Chris Schindle #57
'07
 
  I would like to nominate Dan Shields for teammate of the year. He is what north catholic football is all about. He is one of the toughest football players that I have seen play the game. He gave everything he had on every play of every game. He is what it means to be a leader and teammate. He was one the captains on probably the youngest team in the city. He helped out all the younger players during practice and made sure everyone kept their heads up at the games. He always held his head up high even when we were down by 30 points. I would like to wish him a successful college career and we will miss you very much.
-A Falcon
 
  I'd like to nominate Danny Shields as teammate of the Year. I grew up with Danny, and over the years I've noticed what a leader he has become, on the field especially. Through good times and bad, he wore his heart on his sleeve. No matter what the score was, he still had his team playing full-throttle from warm-ups, to the hand shake. If he continues his leadership skills through college he'll have no problem being one of the teams key players.
        -Anonymous
 
  North Catholic parents feel our man "DAN SHIELDS" should be the overall TEAMMATE of the year for 2006.    Dan has displayed character on and off the field.   Dan is a four year football player, wrestler, (NC is currently the CHAMPIONS), and he is also on the track and field team.    Dan was one of our Captain this year.   He is the Mayor of North Catholic.    Dan has been through many injuries and obstacles throughout his four year at NC but he always kept his spirit and pride!     By picking Dan you will be making the right choice.
Proud 2006 North Catholic Parents
 
  i am nominating dan shields of north catholic for best teammate of the year. dan is a real team player. he will help any one who needs it. no matter what happened during the game, if we were winning or if we were losing dan made sure that we all acted with respect to the game and our opponents. dan was always there for me whenever i needed him. he would help me without me having to ask him.
anon

For COLIN LIBERATORE, of Bonner basketball/baseball

  The Russian Rocket. The Statue of Liberatore. In fact, he was called Colon Liberator by a public address announcer at one point. Colin Liberatore stands 6 feet, 6 inches tall with red hair and is hardly an inconspicuous figure when he enters a room. Soon, though, Colin's imposing appearance yields to his lively personality. Colin played two varsity sports this year: basketball and baseball. A full-time starter on neither team, he became very important to the spirit of these teams throughout their seasons. On the basketball team, he was a deep sub in the words of Ted Silary himself, but when he entered the game against O'Hara at O'Hara, the Bonner faithful that had packed the gym went wild. Just a week or two later, he got in at the end of the playoff game against Roman Catholic, and the Bonner contingent that filled a section of Tom Gola Arena went wild as Colin scored a bucket and took a couple boards while seemingly dominating the floor for the last minutes of the Friar loss. At one point, the fans began a chant of "We want Liberatore," which Coach Brian Daly smiled at and moments later, acquiesced to their call, bringing in someone second only to Jeff Jones in the hearts of Friar fans everywhere. The Year of Liberatore was not over, however. When March 1st came around and Coach John Fleming began to construct his team, there was only one certainty Colin Liberatore would be the defensive specialist at first base that the Friars would put in to bring down the defensive iron curtain. Colin learned from the best during his tour with the Friars for the 2005 season, apprenticing under no less than Kevin Ward himself and former hitting coach and 1998 All-City Rob Cucinotta. It has been in the 2006 season that Colin has truly shown himself worthy of the title of Best Teammate. No matter how few innings he plays, he is never not smiling in the dugout. He is always willing to counsel a teammate on their troubles or put a teammate in line for something they've done wrong. He is never late for practice, he never has an attitude about his status on the team, and he is perfectly accepting of and accelerates at the role he plays for the Friar club. His defensive abilities have always been his strength but his offensive skills manifest themselves occasionally. For example, Colin hit a home run to left field at Bonner, hitting the school. The team went wild, emptying out of the dugout as Colin made his trot around the bases. This burst of power surprised everyone, but no one thought about that as the glee came over their faces while Colin rounded third headed for home. As he touched the plate, everyone gathered around him for a handshake or a high five. A few minutes later, former Bonner slugger Kevin Ward entered the dugout and gave Colin a big bear hug as he issued effusive praise for this accomplishment. It was this day and many others that leave me without reservation in nominating Colin Liberatore for Best Teammate 2006
-- anonymous

   I'd like to second the nomination of Colin Liberatore for Best Teammate
2006.  I played sports with Colin year round in grade school, and we played
football and baseball together in high school.  He always served as an
impact both on and off the field throughout our career together.  When Colin
told me that he wasn't coming out for football senior year, I was
devestated.  Because as much of a struggle as my high school football career
was, I always had my best friend to go through it with me.  During the 05'
campaign, with Colin in the stands, I realized how important he was to me as
a teammate.  It was a great loss to not have him on the field with me
everyday and it certainly affected me as a player.
     This year Colin was/is a fan favorite in both basketball and baseball. 
The student body, as well as Colin's parents, brothers, sister, and
grandparents come to every game as enthused as ever to see Colin play
because they know what happens every time Colin enters the game: The fans
get more into the game, and from what I have seen, the team plays better. 
The fans love Colin because he always plays hard and has a one of a kind
personality off the field.
     Lib's attitude is second to none.  He is always positive and always has
great things to say about his team whether he is getting playing time or
not.  He is the Best Teammate because of what he has brought to every team
on which he has played.  He brings a spark, both to the team and the fans. 
And it is this type of spark that keeps a team together and keeps the fans
into each and every game they attend.  Thus, I second my Bonner brother's
nomination of Colin Liberatore for Best Teammate 2006, and I wish Colin well
at Villanova and in all his future endeavors because he deserves nothing but
the best, for he has been an irreplaceable asset to every team on which he
has ever played.
-- anonymous

   I am writing on behalf of Colin Liberatore as Best Teammate 2006. I was fortunate enough to be Colin's teammate this past season on the basketball team and saw first hand the positive impacts he made on the squad. It wasn't his athleticism or physical talents that made our team better just his personality and spirit. Though he didn't get the most playing time, he still worked his tail off at practice day in and day out. He set an example to the younger players and what it took to be a varsity performer. During games, Colin was always up slapping guys on the back and keeping their heads in the game. He stood out to me in the way that he showed it was important to him to be part of the team. Everyone wants to play a lot, Lib included, but it doesn't always work out that way, unfortunately. He showed that there were many ways to positively impact a team without playing much. He is a guy who fully understands that the team comes first. I can't think of one guy on our squad who would have a bad thing to say about him. He is always upbeat and positive. When guys are down or playing poorly, Lib is there to lift their spirits. I can't say enough good things about him. In talking with guys on the football and baseball teams, their feelings about him are the same. There are many things that i will remember this past basketball season, like Bonner making the playoffs for the first time in a long time, but the most vivid memory might be of the outpourings from the fans when Lib scored in that playoff game and ran down the court pumping his fist. We were down 20 points but it didn't matter because the fan favorite scored a bucket and the crowd and the bench erupted. I am proud to call Colin Liberatore my teammate and I am honored to call him my friend.
-Tim Vanderslice, Bonner ' 07

For FINN SKOVDAL, of Conwell-Egan basketball

I would like to nominate Finn Skovdal aka Big Pink. I've been waiting for 4 years to nominate this model citizen. Finn has been a leader for our basketball team on and off the court. On the court his constant encouragement has been great motivation to help lead us to our best season in 13 years. Always working hard to to push himself and everyone else at practice every day. Finn is even better in the class room. A first track student with straight A's in all of his classes and 100 for conduct for 4 straight years. He will be attending Pittsburgh University on a partial academic scholarship. Plus I think he might just be the nicest kid I have ever met. Everyone in the Conwell-Egan basketball program thinks he is a wonderful kid with a brighter future ahead of him. I wish the best for Finn and the Skovdal family.
P.S. Watch out for Jonas Skovdal freshman, Finns little brother.
-- Adam Van Zelst 11 Conwell-Egan Basketball

  I would also like to nominate Finn Skovdal as best teammate 2006 along with my brother. No one has worked harder in their 4 years of playing than Finn. I would know this because not only being a great teammate he's one of my best friends and its not just on the court but also in the classroom. He would always be there with encouraging words when any of us came out of the game and always drove the younger guys to and from practice. I believe Finn is the perfect guy for this award because he is a great person who works hard at everything he does and is the most unselfish person I know.
-- Ryan Van Zelst

For CHRIS CRAWFORD, of Wood basketball-baseball

I would like to nominate Chris Crawford of Archbishop Wood's basketball and baseball teams. Chris is the fiercest competitor I know, he is working hard 100% of the time. Although our basketball season was a struggle to say the least Chris never gave up. There was not one time when you saw Chris this year with his head down, which is pretty amazing with all the turmoil this kid has been through. Chris experienced a major tragedy this year with the passing of his mother, Mary Crawford who battled through a long stand with brain cancer. We all knew that Chris was a strong person which became even more evident as he played through the pain and dedicated the rest of his time on the court and the upcoming baseball season to making her proud. Chris is the kind of kid you can count on for anything whether its giving you some pointers on making that shot or staying back on that curveball. Not only that but he is also very helpful if something is bothering you or even if your feeling a little down he can bring you up with a few jokes here and there. Chris has always been a leader on the fields, he is currently our captain for baseball and the main reason why we are in the playoff hunt. When I looked on this page and saw that the teammate of the year was back I couldn't wait to get on here and nominate Chris, he is definitely the most deserving of the award and if you had the privilege to play two sports with him you would absolutely be agreeing with me.
-John Schwartz, Wood basketball/baseball
 

   My vote is for Chris Crawford of Wood basketball/baseball.  Although we were never actual teammates in high school, he might as well have been.  He always looked out for me, even though i went to Lasalle.  Being cut twice from basketball he always kept encouraging me and never lost faith in me and for that I am always grateful.  He was a real teammate when I needed the encouragement the most.
-- Matt Greenfield (Lasalle basketball)

For MATT SMYTH, of Judge basketball

            I am nominating my teammate Matt Smyth for best teammate. Smyth
has all the qualities of a great teammate.  He hustles and will dive on the
floor to get a loose ball, he puts his body on the line to set a good screen
to get someone open and will step up and take a charge, and he's always good
for a 3 pointer when you need it. He set an example of determination this
year when he injured his ankle and worked hard to get back to 100%. Some
people would give up and quit but Matt Smyth stuck with it and encouraged
his teammates. Not only is Matt a great teammate, this D1 prospect led
Judge's Junior Varsity in points scored and was third overall in assists. I
don't know to many centers that have dimes like Smyth.  He's unselfish with
the ball and knows when to step up and score himself.
-- anonymous

For FAWAAZ FIELDS, of Bodine baseball

  i nominate Fawaaz Fields of Bodine baseball. He always told us to keep our heads up when we lost. If we had a bad inning, he would say it's in the past, and we'll get them next time. He knows how to hsve a good time, and if you made mistake, he would always be the one to console you. Apart from this, he was a really good player, for it being his first playing the sports.

For KELLEN "BUBBA" KEMP, of Dougherty football

  I would like to take time out to nominate Kellen "Bubba" Kemp from Cardinal Dougherty for Best Teammate for 06'. Bubba should win this award because of how good of a teammate he was. Bubba has been through a lot with his teammates and teams as a whole. He had 2 go through not 1 but 2 deaths on the team in his 4 years which has 2 be hard. Bub has won 1 game I believe in his 4 years but never gave up. He deserves this award hands down.
Cardinal Fanatic