Posted on Leave a comment

#CoachFranke Celebrates 50 Years of Coaching Division I Women’s #Fencing at #TempleUniversity

Coach Franke and former Temple Fencer and #BrooklynGirlCode Creator, Aziza Hassan pose at the 2021 Temple Open in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Dr. Nikki Franke celebrates fifty years of coaching the Division 1 Women’s Fencing Team at Temple University this year!

Coach Franke and former Temple Fencer and #BrooklynGirlCode Creator, Aziza Hassan pose at the 2021 Temple Open in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Coach Franke (right) and former Temple Fencer and #BrooklynGirlCode Creator, Aziza Hassan (left) pose at the 2021 Temple Open in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

I was a young inexperienced teenager when I walked into Coach Franke’s fencing room in McGonigle Hall for the first time. Looking back now, I didn’t know anything (competitive-wise) about my weapon, Sabre. Coming from Brooklyn, New York and fencing only on a recreational level at the Peter Westbrook Foundation, I had only one national tournament under my belt. But, Coach Franke was still willing to take a chance on me.

This is what makes Coach Franke the great coach that she is, the chances that she’s willing to take on young inexperienced fencers. After transitioning over to Sabre from Foil the previous year at the suggestion of my then coach Mika’il Sankofa, I had to sharpen up my skills asap to prove to Coach Franke that she wasn’t just doing me a favor. Along with the help and support of Zoila Palacio who was the Sabre & Epee coach at Temple University, I went on to become a three-time NCAA Championship competitor as well as an All-American fencer for Temple University. Compared to my teammates back home who were already going on to compete at the 2000 Summer Games in Athens, I was far behind.

However, with the support of Coach Franke and Coach Palacio, I was able to go on and compete and gain high results in several international senior world cups all over the world between the years of 2006 and 2015.

This year makes 50 years that Coach Franke has been coaching up the young ladies at Temple University. I’m so glad that I chose Temple University as my school back in 2000. This is definitely a decision that I never regret. Here’s to 50 more years Coach Franke! Hoot! Hoot! -xoxo #BrooklynGirlCode <3

Update: Coach Franke will be inducted into the 2022 class of the Philadelphia Sports Hall of Fame.
Posted on Leave a comment

#SloaneStephens #Wins All at the #USOPEN, #WorldFencingDay Makes Its Debut and #TracyMcGrady Gets Inducted into the Basketball #HallofFame!

Screenshot 2017-09-14 17.41.26

So many great things happened in the world of sports this past week, that we had to spread some of the love over here at Brooklyn Girl Code! Florida native, Sloane Stephens won her first U.S. Open title on Saturday, September 9th beating out Madison Keys who was the No. 15-seed. With this win, Stephens becomes the lowest ranked player (No. 83-seed) to ever win a women’s singles title at the event. Tennis great Rafael Nadal kept the winning spree going winning his third U.S. Open title (2010, 2013, 2017) on Sunday, September 10th beating out No. 28-seed Kevin Anderson in the men’s single final at the world famous Arthur Ashe Stadium. The two champions celebrated their well deserved titles with friends and family all week long. Check out some cool photos of the champs below.

While Sloane Stephens was celebrating her first U.S. Open win this past Saturday, my wonderful sport of Fencing was celebrating its own day! “World Fencing Day” which was created by the FIE (International Fencing Federation) in conjuction with the IOC (International Olympic Committee) celebrates the solidarity of the sport of Fencing all over the world. Fencing is most definitely a sport that is played in hundreds of countries worldwide. So, this day was long overdue. However, as a Fencer myself, I was delighted to see the sport finally get its own day! Check out some really cool pics of all the international Fencers celebrating “World Fencing Day” below.

Lastly, but certainly not least, one of my all-time favorites, seven-time NBA All-Star Tracy McGrady got inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of FameMcGrady, who I always looked at as one of the more humble players in the NBA, gave an awesome enshrinement speech alongside his legendary players and peers at the ceremony held in Springfield, Massachusetts on Friday, September 8th. Watch the video below! Nothing but champions over here at Brooklyn Girl Code baby! Congrats to all the winners and honorees from this past week!

Screenshot 2017-09-12 18.19.38

Screenshot 2017-09-12 18.19.12

Screenshot 2017-09-13 13.38.01

Screenshot 2017-09-13 13.38.23

Screenshot 2017-09-12 18.08.05

Screenshot 2017-09-14 19.15.46

Screenshot 2017-09-12 18.09.24

Screenshot 2017-09-12 18.06.44

Screenshot 2017-09-12 18.09.10

Screenshot 2017-09-12 18.09.49

Screenshot 2017-09-12 18.08.48

Screenshot 2017-09-20 12.06.43
Six-time Olympian Peter Westbrook warming up for practice at The Fencers Club in New York City, New York.

Screenshot 2017-09-20 12.16.58

Screenshot 2017-09-20 12.11.36
Three-time Olympian Keeth Smart running a victory lap after a huge win!

Screenshot 2017-09-20 12.19.33

Screenshot 2017-09-20 12.19.14

Screenshot 2017-09-12 17.55.12

Screenshot 2017-09-12 17.58.42

Screenshot 2017-09-12 17.59.17

Posted on 1 Comment

#IsaiahThomas Goes #HAM in the 2017 #EasternConference Semifinals

Screenshot 2017-05-03 14.17.33
Isaiah Thomas covers Slam magazine’s June 2017 issue. Photo courtesy of @rashidaaz Instagram.

Boston Celtics’ Isaiah Thomas is proving to be the MVP of this year’s 2017 NBA Playoffs. Tuesday night, the 5’9″ point guard put up 53 points in a close overtime game against the Washington Wizards to give his team a 2-0 series lead in the Eastern Conference semifinals. Although John Wall’s Washington Wizards put up a good fight against the Celtics, they proved to be no match for Thomas’ overly-aggressive game. The Celtics went on to win 129-119 in overtime on the day that would’ve been Thomas’ sister Chyna’s 23rd birthday. He credited her entirely for his stellar playoff performance. Thomas told ESPN.com:

“It just wasn’t a good day for me with it being my sister’s birthday, me being in the hospital for three or four hours today. I just didn’t have the energy. But once I got around the guys, got to the arena, I felt like I could go. And I told coach Brad Stevens I could. There was no way I couldn’t play on Chyna’s birthday. I wanted to win for her. I wanted to play well for her.”

Definitely a huge night for Isaiah Thomas’ professional career. Watch some footage of Isaiah Thomas going H.A.M. (H.ard A.s a M.otherf*ck%r) during the game and post-game footage via NBA‘s official Twitter account below. Let’s go Boston Celtics!

#NBAPlayoffs pic.twitter.com/H5cJjw4pWz

 

Posted on 2 Comments

#TempleFootball Dominates at the #NFLDraft2017

And now for your weekend sports break… it was a great weekend to be a Temple Owl! Temple University dominated at this year’s NFL Draft which took place this past weekend in Philadelphia, Pa. A record 250,000 plus people attended the draft which was held outdoors for the first time in the NFL’s history. The draft which took place on the steps of Philadelphia’s Art Museum located on Benjamin Franklin Parkway proved to be one for the books. Overall Temple Football had three players drafted including Nate Hairston who was drafted to the Indianapolis Colts in the fifth round; Dion Dawkins who was drafted to the Buffalo Bills in the second round and Haason Reddick who was drafted in the first round to the Arizona Cardinals and was the 13th pick overall. In addition to Hairston, Dawkins and Reddick being drafted, six other Owls were signed on as free agents this past Saturday in Philadelphia. Newly drafted Temple Owl Haason Reddick told Philly.com:

“It means something special is really going on at Temple. I would advise people to open their eyes and watch what’s going on.”

With this past weekend’s draft being the second year in a row that Temple’s football program sent three players to the NFL, Haason Reddick is speaking true words. We’re sure Temple University Head Football Coach Geoff Collins was one happy camper this past week. So proud of Temple Football’s 2017 NFL draftees and even prouder to be a Temple Ooowl! That’s my alma mater! All the best to Temple’s newest draftees in their professional football careers. Check out all of Temple’s 2017 NFL draftees below.

 

Screenshot 2017-04-30 23.18.03
No. 7 Haason Reddick was drafted to the Arizona Cardinals in the 1st round, 13th overall in the 2017 NFL Draft. Photo courtesy of Temple Football Instagram: @temple_fb

Screenshot 2017-04-30 23.18.16

Screenshot 2017-04-30 23.18.28

Screenshot 2017-04-30 23.17.39

Screenshot 2017-04-30 23.17.14

Screenshot 2017-04-30 23.16.27

Screenshot 2017-04-30 23.17.28

Screenshot 2017-04-30 23.50.41

Screenshot 2017-04-30 23.16.10

Posted on 1 Comment

#JackieRobinson on Breaking the #ColorBarrier in Major League Sports

Screenshot 2017-04-15 13.33.56
Photo courtesy of ESPN Instagram (@espn).

“Feels so good to be a Crooklyn Dodger!” – Masta Ace “Crooklyn Dodgers

The day was April 15th, 1947. Seventy years ago today, to be exact. It was Opening Day for the Brooklyn Dodgers in the historic Ebbets Field stadium which was conveniently located in the Flatbush section of Brooklyn, New York. However, this Opening Day was way different than the Dodgers’ previous ones. Today, a young man by the name of Jackie Robinson who wore the number “42” on his jersey would be taking the field as the starting first baseman, batting second. On this day, seventy years ago, Jackie Robinson single-handedly broke the color barrier in Major League Sports.

Although there were rumors that people would be boycotting the game due to their disapproval of Robinson’s integration, the game actually went very well. The Dodgers would go on to win 5-3 against the Boston Braves (now known as the Atlanta Braves). When Robinson’s number was called on the P.A. system as the Brooklyn Dodgers’ starting first baseman, the crowd applauded “politely” according to sports editor Ed Silverman who was at Ebbets Field on this historic day in 1947 to witness history. In a new article for The New Yorker which commemorates the 70th anniversary of Jackie Robinson breaking the color barrier in Major League Baseball, Ed Silverman revisits April 15th, 1947 and talks about what the day was like:

“I deliberately sat in the bleachers, which were predominantly filled with black attendees. The women were all well coifed. Many wore lovely dresses and light coats. The men were all nicely attired. It was more like going to church than to a ballgame.”

Jackie Robinson would go on to have a stellar first season in his Major League Baseball career and became the recipient of the inaugural MLB Rookie of the Year Award in 1947. Robinson also served as a Major League Baseball All-Star for six consecutive seasons from 1949 through 1954 and won the National League Most Valuable Player Award in 1949, becoming the first Black player to do so. All in a day’s work for a legendary sports giant like Mr. Robinson. All in a day’s work!

Check out some cool footage via MLB.com of Jackie Robinson’s opening day, here.