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2009 IN REVIEW Top 20 moments in LGBT sports
by Ross Forman

This article shared 3263 times since Wed Dec 30, 2009
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Here's a look at the Top 20 LGBT sporting moments from 2009, mixing national news with local flavor:

1. The World Outgames in Copenhagen battle a worldwide financial crisis, and deliver memorable eight-day event despite hate-crime attacks that sent one U.S. resident to the hospital.

2. The Federation of Gay Games awards the 2014 event to Cleveland. Dick Uyvari of Chicago made the official announcement in Cologne, Germany, site of the 2010 Games.

3. Chicago wins the rights to host two major 2011 events: the Gay Softball World Series and the Gay Bowl.

4. Tragedy strikes at the annual Pride Bowl gay flag-football tournament in Chicago when Jorge Lopez, a player for the Michigan Panthers, passed out on the sidelines during a game and died shortly thereafter.

5. SPIN Cougars win the B-Division championship at the annual Gay Softball World Series in Milwaukee, marking Chicago first B-Division champion and the city's first champion in any division since 2006.

6. The AIDS Foundation of Chicago ( AFC ) breaks ties with the National AIDS Marathon Training Program ( NAMTP ) and officially announces its new Team To End AIDS ( T2 ) endurance-training program. After seven years in Chicago, NAMTP has trained thousands of local runners for various marathons worldwide and, in the process, raised millions of dollars for AFC.

7. The annual North American Gay Volleyball Association holds its annual National Tournament in Chicago over Memorial Day weekend. More than 100 teams from numerous countries participate.

8. Hunter's C-Division softball team wins multiple out-of-state tournaments.

9. There were numerous anti-gay comments from national sports celebrities, such as Larry Johnson and Chris Jericho.

10. The Chicago Freeze makes its Gay Bowl debut, and finishes in sixth place out of 20 teams with a 2-3 record.

11. In women's football, the Chicago Force advances to the Western Conference Championship Game, but lose 40-14 to the Kansas City Tribe. Linda Bache, a former standout on defense for the Force, is the team's general manager and owner; Sami Grisafe is the team's quarterback. Both are lesbians.

12. The Chicago Blackwolves debut in a new hockey league in Northbrook. The team wins its opener and expands its roster, but ultimately loses its first-round playoff game.

13. The Chicago Metropolitan Sports Association ( CMSA ) launches a 12-team outdoor kickball league.

14. CMSA's Friday night beach-volleyball league continues to expand. The 2009 season featured a record 159 teams, making it the largest LGBT beach-volleyball league in the nation.

15. CMSA softball leagues feature 100 teams ( 46 in each Sunday Open Division, and 44 in women's league, along with 12 additional Thursday teams ) . CMSA softball is, by far, the largest gay softball league in the world and one of the largest softball leagues in the country.

16. CMSA inducts three into the Hall of Fame: Nancy 'Mac' Mackenzie, Mike McHale and Early Quintana.

17. The Chi-Town Softball Classic successfully returns after a three-year year hiatus over July 4th weekend, featuring more than 20 teams from across the country.

18. The CMSA indoor volleyball league ( open division ) soared to a record 90 teams.

19. Mommies play sports. CMSA officials noted that there were more new mothers competing in sports in 2009 than any previous year.

20. The 12-person Class of 2009 for the North American Gay Amateur Athletic Alliance ( NAGAAA ) features three Chicagoans: Sam Coady, Bobby Nicholson and Phil Runions.

This article shared 3263 times since Wed Dec 30, 2009
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