HOUSTON — Houston High School sophomore Danielle Stephenson has been chosen to represent Ohio in the Down Under Sports competition in Australia.
“Down Under Sports’ goal is to continue to provide athletes who excel in their sport the opportunity to experience the culture, beauty, and grandeur of the land down under all within the framework of spirited and intense competition,” said Job Cyril, media director of Down Under Sports.
Down Under Sports was founded in 1989 by George O’Scanlon, a New Zealander. He was in love with American football as a young man and had the desire to promote it to the people of New Zealand and Australia. That eventually led to the Down Under Bowl, and other sports followed.
“The Down Under Sports programs use the common language of sports to bridge the continents and provide a forum for athletes from around the world to compete head-to-head in the sports they love,” said Cyril.
Danielle was chosen to compete based on her leadership in her cross country team.
“She has attended every practice, pep rallies, other regional and state meets to support team members. She was chosen for these reasons and because of her natural talent in cross country. She has been running for Houston school since seventh-grade,” said her mother, Michelle Stephenson.
Danielle has won placing ribbons at cross country meets and varsity letters for first and second years.
Danielle’s mother competed in cross country and track in school. Danielle feels that cross country is the hardest sport and most difficult for which to train.
“It’s always worth it, and it’s the only sport where you decide ho good you are by the effort you give,” said Danielle.
Danielle plans to attend college to study psychology after high school. She is currently involved in band, Spanish Circle, and track in addition to cross country.
Danielle will leave for Australia on June 29 and return July 8.
Anyone wishing to support Danielle in her endeavor may do so by donation or buying a T-shirt. Call Michelle at 937-703-2905 or Nate at 937-726-5342.