Reporting J.D. Miles
WEST (CBS 11 NEWS) - A baseball game between two high school teams usually invites tense competition.
But before Tuesday’s game in West, the visiting team presented gifts and cash to the opponents.
Jerseys with the phrase “West Strong” were presented to each member of West High School’s team.
It was a symbolic way of giving the shirt of their back to fellow teenagers, some of whom lost their homes in the deadly fertilizer plant explosion.
“God forbid something like this would happen in Palmer we’d like to think they would help us out and I think they would,” says Rusty Blankenship, Palmer Baseball Coach.
Palmer players also made special caps for their opponents inscribed with personal handwritten messages. .
“I said stay strong and we’ve all been praying for you,” says Cory Rhodes, Palmer High School student.
One of the West players who received a cap and jersey was Tyler Pustejovsky.
“That’s really nice of them,” says Pustejovsky.
His cousin Joey was one of the firefighters killed in the explosion.
“It’s always on my mind so can’t really get rid of it. Its tough playing with it,” says Pustejovsky.
Palmer’s school superintendent also presented West with a check for $10,000 before the game.
Palmer won 3-2 in extra innings but the game was a practice for both teams preparing for the state playoffs.
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