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The Sun-Times - Heber Springs, AR
  • Roark honored for work on, off court

  • The 4th annual McDonald's Full Court Awards banquet tipped off in Little Rock Wednesday, April 17 honoring 16 outstanding high school stars by McDonald's and Arkansas Speciality Orthopaedics and KATV.
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  • The 4th annual McDonald's Full Court Awards banquet tipped off in Little Rock Wednesday, April 17 honoring 16 outstanding high school stars by McDonald's and Arkansas Speciality Orthopaedics and KATV. Among those stars, Concord junior guard Jacob Roark received the boys 2013 Antony Hobbs Spirit Award and Spring Hill standout hoopster Madison Kidd received the girls award. KATV Channel 7 Sports Director and Anchor Steve Sullivan and the father of Antony Hobbs presented Jacob and Madison with their awards. The Antony Hobbs Spirit Award is based on credentials that an athlete displays while being a great teammate and puts academics first and loves life as Antony did. Antony was a special young man who loved life and basketball. He was playing for the Little Rock Parkview Patriots when he collapsed on the court and later died. Antony was only 16 years old. Roark led the Pirates to the 1A state championship game at Barton Coliseum while averaging 24 points, 6 assists, 5 rebounds and 2 steals per game. Throughout the season, Concord Coach Keith Cornett reiterated that nobody could possibly work any harder than Roark. As Concord reached postseason play, Jacob's grandfather Kenny Brackett, who was one of the team's biggest fans, fell ill causing Jacob to miss some school and practice while visiting the hospital. “Jacob showed a lot of perseverance in that situation,” said Cornett. “His grandpa passed away on a Wednesday, that first day of the regional tournament when we were playing Guy-Perkins. “He had spent several days at the hospital but came back to play and had a great game. He averaged 30 points from district to the state finals,” added Cornett. Jacob, the son of Dale and Mandi Roark, also excels in the classroom, where he currently holds a near perfect grade point average. “He is a straight A student,” said Cornett. “He is close to a 4.0, if not.” Madison was diagnosed with Crohn's disease back in the summer of 2012 and spent numerous days seeking treatment in the Children's Hospital in Little Rock. Due to this illness, Madison missed some time during this past basketball season. Despite, her illness, Madison showed much character, determination and pride to work her back and returned to help her teammates repeat as 7-2A West Conference and district tournament champs, along with advancing to the semifinals in the class 2A state tournament. As a result, the Lady Bears ended this season 30-2 overall, marking the best season for the Spring Hill senior high girls basketball program under head coach Laura Kidd. Madison will graduate this May, as she has inspired many athletes and people all over the state, to show no matter what the situation may occur, you can still succeed through true faith in God. Madison is the daughter of Revel and Angie Kidd of Spring Hill. (Gerren Smith of the Hope Star contributed to this article)
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