David Driver is a native of Harrisonburg, Virginia, and played baseball at Turner Ashby High and Eastern Mennonite College (now University). He graduated from EMC in 1985 with a degree in English and a minor in journalism. He has lived in the Washington, D.C. area for nearly 25 years and was the first sports editor of the daily Baltimore Examiner and for nearly 10 years was also the sports editor of Laurel (Md.) Leader, now part of the Baltimore Sun Media Group. He is now a full-time freelance writer, wrote two books on sports in 2022, and is a consultant for MVP International, a leader in sports trips overseas for high school athletes. He covered the Nationals in the World Series year of 2019 for The Washington Times and covered the team for five years for The Sports Exchange. Read more
by David Driver and Lacy LuskSee all books
This unique book is a look at the past, present, and future of baseball in Virginia, a state which has produced five Hall of Famers and several World Series stars. It also looks at the history of minor league baseball in the big cities of Norfolk and Richmond, as well as smaller cities such as Lynchburg, Salem, and Fredericksburg. In addition, the book looks at what makes Virginia unique with amateur leagues that have been around for decades, including the Valley Baseball League and the Rockingham County Baseball League, which began in 1924.
October 29, 2021
By David Driver
For the Washington Citypaper
Used with permission
Basketball has taken Prince George’s County native Danny Agbelese all over the world. He’s played for pro teams in Iran, Uruguay, Greece, Italy, France, and now Spain, where he has competed for several clubs in four seasons. But it is a place near to his D.C. roots where the 31-year-old, 6-foot-8 post player with a penchant for blocking shots, honed his skills that have lasted nearly a decade on the uncertain path of an American playing pro basketball overseas.
Agbelese, who has many relatives still living in the District, was a frequent visitor to the courts at Barry Farms in Ward 8. In bruising games against older players, he developed his post moves and the ability to challenge opponents at the rim. Among the players he faced at Barry Farms was David Hawkins, a D.C. native who played at Archbishop Carroll and Temple University, followed by several years in Europe.
“It’s amazing. You have to be built for it,” Agbelese says of those Barry Farms encounters. “The trash-talking, the intensity. It really is what bred us Maryland, D.C., Virginia players, guys that are so close. You learn the physicality, you learn the tricks. You learn things playing there.”
Agbelese played high school ball at DuVal in Lanham through 2008 and two years at a junior college in Texas. He then headed to Hampton University, a Division I school in Virginia, where he averaged 4.0 points and 3.1 blocks as a junior and 5.8 points and 2.5 blocks as a senior during the 2011-12 season.
Keith Coutreyer, the former associate head coach at Howard, helped recruit Agbelese to Hampton as an assistant. Coutreyer left the year before Agbelese arrived, then faced him in the MEAC.
“Danny was the defensive anchor on those Hampton teams,” says Coutreyer, who is now back at Hampton as an assistant. “He allowed the guards and wings to be aggressive and apply pressure upfront knowing that he was holding down the backline.” Read more
May 10, 2019
By David Driver
For the Special to Newsday
Used with permission
COLLEGE PARK, Md. — Stony Brook graduate senior attack Nicole Barretta became emotional after her team stunned defending national champion James Madison in overtime in the first round of the NCAA women’s lacrosse tournament here Friday night.
And it wasn’t because she scored the winning, sudden-death goal in the 10-9 victory over the No. 9 Dukes at the University of Maryland.
“I get another day with my team,” said Barretta, in her only season with the Seawolves after transferring from Temple. “Being with this team, I couldn’t ask for a better experience. The least I can do is have another day with these girls.”
The No. 14 Seawolves (16-4) advance to play here noon Sunday against powerhouse Maryland, which has the best RPI in the country. On top of that Barretta’s sister, Tori, is a sophomore midfielder for the Terps. They are the daughters of Larry and Kate Barretta and grew up in Exton, Pa., near Philadelphia.
Her parents and sister attended the game Friday, and now mother and father will have mixed loyalties Sunday.
“Probably the most stressed out Mother’s Day she will ever have,” said Barretta, with a grin. Read more