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For the first time since 2016, Tallassee was recognized by the Alabama High School Athletic Association (AHSAA) as a Sportsmanship School for the 2018-19 school year. Tallassee, one of 99 schools announced last week, went the entire year without receiving a sportsmanship school fine or having a player or coach ejected in any sport.

"I think it says a lot about the kids," Tallassee athletic director Mike Battles said. "I think it also says a lot about the coaches that are coaching. That was awesome. When I saw that, that's one of those things that made me really proud. Our kids are doing it the right way and our coaches are doing it right."

Tallassee will be honored at the AHSAA Sportsmanship Luncheon during the 2019 AHSAA Summer Conference and All-Star Sports Week. The 12th annual luncheon will be held at noon on Friday, July 19, at the Montgomery Renaissance Hotel and Convention Center.

Overall, 376 of the AHSAA’s 416 high schools (90.4%) have combined to earn the Sportsmanship Award recognition 1,195 times since 2008.

“We are extremely pleased to recognize 99 high schools for this noted accomplishment,” AHSAA executive director Steve Savarese said in a release. “Our total fines were down 4.1% in 2018-19 over the previous year, and we thank all our schools for their commitment to teaching good sportsmanship and upholding the regulations and by-laws created by our member schools.”

The AHSAA also released its annual Ejection and School Fine report, reporting that 258 high schools had a total of 548 student-athlete and 70 coach ejections during the 2018-19 school year. 

The student-athletes with ejections represent only 0.003% of the more than 156,000 student-athletes who participated in AHSAA sports events in 2018-19, and the 74 coaches with ejections are just 0.006% of the AHSAA’s more than 11,000 certified coaches.

“We are also encouraged by the large percentage of student-athletes and coaches who are competing in our sports’ programs who never receive an ejection,” Savarese said. “Our goal, however, is always for each school to be fine and ejection free. It is imperative that each of us, our schools, coaches and administrators continue to emphasize daily the importance of good sportsmanship to our students, parents and communities.”