How a 13-year-old girl became today’s most talked-about baseball superstar. The crowd was going wild. People chanted, “Mo’ne, Mo’ne, Mo’ne!” It was August 15, 2014, and Mo’ne Davis, 13, was about to make history. Mo’ne (moh-NAY) was pitching in the 2014 Little League World Series (LLWS). That’s a yearly tournament for the world’s best youth baseball players. Mo’ne, who is from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, was one pitch away from becoming the first girl ever to win a game as a pitcher in the LLWS. Even better, Mo’ne was pitching a shutout. That means she hadn’t allowed the other team to score. The pressure was on. Mo’ne wound up and fired a 70-mile-per-hour fastball. The batter swung ... And missed. Mo’ne had won the game! Breaking Barriers Mo’ne was the only girl on the field, but this talented and confident athlete had no problem playing with boys. And the other players on her team, the Taney Dragons, were happy to have Mo’ne as their pitcher. “People make a big deal out of me being a girl,” Mo’ne says, “but my teammates don’t. They just let me be myself.” Why are people making a big deal out of Mo’ne? For one thing, only 18 girls have ever played in the LLWS. Girls often don’t have as many athletic opportunities as boys do. The media pays more attention to male athletes. And most colleges spend more on men’s teams than they do on women’s teams. But Mo’ne’s success is inspiring to many people because it shows that things may be changing. Mo’ne proved that not only can a girl play with boys—she can be the best on the team. Time to Play Fair Before 1972, only one out of every 27 girls played high school sports. The main physical activities for girls were cheerleading and square dancing. At colleges, female athletes were given only 2 percent of the money set aside for sports. Today, millions of girls play high school sports. There are many more college teams and professional teams for women. What caused this major change? A 1972 law called Title IX. This law made it illegal for schools to discriminate against anyone based on gender. After Title IX went into effect, schools began creating more girls’ teams and spending more money on equipment, coaches, and fields for girls. Girls like Mo’ne have grown up playing multiple sports and honing their skills through hours of practice. Mo’ne believes that female athletes will soon make more progress. “Probably a couple of years from now, there’ll be a lot of girls here,” she told reporters at the LLWS. She’s a Star Mo’ne’s team didn’t win the LLWS. But millions of fans learned her name. She appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live! And in Teen Vogue. In October, she threw out the first pitch of Game 4 of the World Series. Even more impressive, Mo’ne was the youngest athlete ever to appear on the cover of Sports Illustrated. Mo’ne has not let her new fame go to her head. She is too busy playing baseball, soccer, and other sports. One day, she hopes to play basketball for the University of Connecticut and then the WNBA. In the meantime, Mo’ne enjoys being a role model for girls who want to play sports. “If I can inspire girls to reach their goals,” she says, “then I’m happy.” —Joe Bubar Vocabulary confident: having a strong belief in your own abilities media: TV, newspapers, and other outlets that communicate information to large groups of people discriminate: to treat someone unfairly gender: describes whether someone is female or male honing: improving READING-COMPREHENSION TEST PREP Show What You Know Answer these questions about “The Amazing Mo’ne.” Fill in the bubble next to the best answer to each question 1. What is the main idea of this article? Girls are better at sports than boys are. Mo’ne is a great basketball player. Mo’ne made history at the LLWS and inspires many people. Only 18 girls have played in the LLWS. 2. Why do you think the author included Mo’ne’s quote “They just let me be myself”? to show that her team accepts her to show that she is a girl to show that she is talented to show that she has a good coach 3. In the section “She’s a Star,” the word impressive means _____. expensive amazing happy silly 4. Which phrase from the text helps the reader understand the meaning of the word impressive? “Mo’ne enjoys being a role model” “She is too busy playing baseball” “ Mo’ne was the youngest athlete ever to appear on the cover” “Mo’ne’s team didn’t win” 5. The reader can infer that Title IX _____. helped create opportunites in sports for boys \ helped create opportunites in sports for girls like Mo’ne is no longer in effect was a very popular law in 1972 6. Which statement is supported by the text? Mo’ne is the best pitcher in history. Mo’ne’s team won the LLWS. After the LLWS ended, Mo’ne continued playing different sports. Few people have heard of Mo’ne. Answer the following question on a separate piece of paper. 7. What do you find most inspiring about Mo’ne Davis? What would you say to Mo’ne if you met her? Write a letter and tell her! Include information from the text in your letter, and send it to email@example.com. We’ll send it to Mo’ne. Plus,10 people who write to Mo’ne will each receive a copy of her new book, Mo’ne Davis: Remember My Name!
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