Students celebrated Notre Dame’s 33-17 victory over Miami in the Sun Bowl. “The game was awesome,” senior Fred Jung said. “I had a really great time both at the game and around the city of El Paso.” Most students agreed the best part of the trip was seeing the overflowing support for the football team. “Although my friends and I did not go to the planned Notre Dame festivities, it was incredible to see the amount of Notre Dame supporters just at the tailgating scene,” Jung said. For senior Silvana Martinez and sophomore Walter Myers, both of whom are El Paso residents, the Sun Bowl was a unique opportunity for them to experience a major Notre Dame event in their hometown. “The whole weekend was great,” Martinez said. “There was a huge turnout of not only Notre Dame students, but also locals who embraced our school and became supporters. “One of the best parts about the game was the fact that all of the cheers and traditions associated with the student section at Notre Dame Stadium were brought to Sun Bowl Stadium. It was awesome to see students doing push-ups after Notre Dame scores.” Myers agreed with his fellow El Pasoan. “I have never seen this much hype surrounding the Sun Bowl. It was amazing,” he said. As a member of the Notre Dame Club of El Paso, Myers helped in the preparation for the game itself and the activities surrounding it. “We organized a canned food drive for a local homeless shelter, and anyone who brought a can was given ‘The Shirt,’” he said. “We also organized the battle of the bands event inside the El Paso Convention Center and the pep rally, which was unfortunately cancelled due to inclement weather.” The irony of the title of “Sun Bowl” was evident, as the kickoff temperature was 34 degrees and snow was on the ground. For many students, the weather was the sole letdown of the weekend. “I was expecting warm weather, so the sweatshirt and jeans I wore on game day were definitely not enough,” Jung said. “It felt like South Bend,” Martinez said. “I do not think any of us were expecting as much snow as we got.” Despite the weather, the Irish victory and time spent with friends over the New Year’s weekend made the Sun Bowl experience one to remember. “I think the best part of my weekend was seeing all of my school friends and having them meet my home friends,” Martinez said. “When I found out Notre Dame would be playing in the Sun Bowl, I was ecstatic because I knew my last Notre Dame football game as a student would be in my hometown. It was a great last hurrah.” “El Paso did a great job of keeping the environment both hospitable and safe,” Myers said. “I’m really proud of both my city and school.”
St Jago High School’s Class One 400-metre star Sean Bailey wants to follow in the footsteps of his elder sister and former World and Olympic champion, Veronica Campbell-Brown.Bailey who won his 400m semi-final yesterday in 47.78 seconds, said the former world and Olympic 100 and 200 metres champion serves as his greatest motivation, and though he knows it will not be an easy task to reach her levels of accomplishment internationally, he is seriously trying to get there.”She is my biggest motivation. Every day before an event, she tells me to do my best and enjoy myself. She always tells me that track and field does not stop at high school and that it’s much greater than that, and it can be a profession. So she is very involved (in life), especially educational wise and I am glad to have a sister like her,” Bailey told The Gleaner.The youngster dreams of becoming a world-rated athlete in the future, and he is aware of the amount of effort that is needs to get to the top.’Great legacy'”It’s a great motivation to strive to be a World champion like VCB, as I would like to keep up the tradition of her. It’s a great legacy,” he said.Bailey, who is expected to be one of the main challengers to Kingston College’s (KC) Akeem Bloomfield’s, says upsetting the big KC runner and taking the gold would be very satisfying for himself and big sister.”She is always telling me that everyone is human being and they breathe the same breath, so I can beat anybody, so it would mean a lot to her (if win 400m final),” he said.The quarter-miler, who is still recovering from an injury, hopes to complete the championship healthy so that he will be fit for the Carifta Games.”I know I am not 100 per cent and I went out and gave it my best just to make sure St Jago wins this championship. My expectation is to finish injury-free so I can go and represent Jamaica at the CARIFTA Games. That’s my aim,” he said. – L.S.