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Bowie native selected to Olympic development program

Rachel Sharkey, of Bowie, was recently selected to the Region III Olympic Development Program girls soccer player pool. Sharkey scored 10 goals and added nine assists in 20 games as a senior for the Hebrew Academy in Greensboro, N.C. and was named to the North Carolina Soccer Coaches Association All-Region team. She had also scored 14 goals and added three assists as a junior at Hebrew Academy.

— Ted Black

Northwestern senior picks Bowie State

Northwestern High School’s David Belle, of Hyattsville, said he didn’t want to spend the upcoming year thinking about where he’d end up in college. That’s why last week, he became one of the first senior basketball players to make a college decision, verbally committing to Bowie State University.

“I wanted to go into the high school season already knowing where I was going so it wouldn’t stress me out,” said Belle, a 6-foot-3 shooting guard with a 6-7 wingspan.

Belle averaged 13.8 points last season at the Hyattsville school and upped his scoring to about 23 points this summer, Northwestern coach Terrance Burke said.

“He’s super-duper athletic. He’s just a scorer. A natural scorer,” Burke said. “... I think the difference between last year and the year before that is that he actually put it all together.”

Belle, who played for the Metro All-Stars Amateur Athletic Union team, said he received interest from other schools, including West Virginia State and the University of the District of Columbia, but chose the Division II school in Bowie on Aug. 6 after getting the offer in July.

Belle said he is hoping that Northwestern can improve on last season’s 7-14 record.

“After last season when we lost, it really hurt. And I just wanted to get better and see how good I can get,” Belle said. “... We played well all summer and got a lot of chemistry. I just want a winning season and to have a lot of success.”

— Eric Goldwein

Athletics help Wise claim to nation’s best high school

Henry A. Wise High School was recognized as the nation’s “Best High School” at Steve Harvey’s 2014 Ford Neighborhood Awards on Friday at Phillips Arena in Atlanta. Among the many academic achievements, six athletic state championships in the past three years were listed on the Neighborhood Awards website as part of Wise’s nomination summary. They beat out Cass Technical High School in Detroit, Arabia Mountain High School in Lithonia, Ga., and I.C. Norcom High School in Portsmouth, Va.

— Prince J. Grimes