Twins making an impact at Falkville on court, baseball field and in the classroom
Nick Johnston, Hartselle Enquirer
FALKVILLE – Keith Whitley wrote a song once called "Brotherly Love."
In that song, he talks about brothers fighting over the same bike and baseball gloves.
Did Ross and Ryan Summerford ever fight over the same bike or baseball glove? Who knows?
But are they competitive, smart and hard workers?
Ross and Ryan play basketball for Falkville and will graduate in 2004. They both plan on attending Alabama next fall.
Ross wants to be an orthopedic surgeon, while Ryan will likely go into business management.
But right now, the twins say it's all about basketball season. The two are so competitive, even in practice head coach Yancy Randolph has to keep an eye on them.
"I won't let them guard each other," Randolph said. "They won't get into a fight, but they play so hard against each other, it's difficult to let them guard each other."
Before the season began, the two were going at it when Ross caught an elbow from Ryan.
"I was going for the ball or something, and he caught me in the lip," Ross said. "He didn't do it on purpose, but it didn't make me too happy at the time."
"I sent him (Ross) home to see if he wanted to get stitches," Randolph said. "He decided against it and came back to practice.
"Both of them are tough. I know every single night they play as hard as anybody I have."
Not only do they have athletic talent, they have academic talent as well. Ryan is the valedictorian of their class, while Ross is third.
And their dad, Robert, makes sure they stay busy when not in class, on the court, or on the baseball field.
"They can build a fence with the best of them," he said. "They help me a lot on the farm."
Robert also coached Ross and Ryan from little league baseball up through American Legion baseball.
"We've always been on the same team," Ross said. "We've always been real competitive and have tried to outdo each other. But, we also try to help each other. We just want to make each other better."
So far, their stats are eerily similar. Ross is averaging 7.5 points per game, and Ryan averages 7.25 a game. Both average about six rebounds per contest, while Ross has the edge in free throw percentage (76-69 percent).
So the question had to be asked: Who would win in a game of one on one?
"I would win," Ross said. "Sometimes I'm more aggressive than he is, I'm a little more physical."
Ryan did not disagree, he just referred to this past Sunday.
"Sunday we came (to the gym) and played 21," Ryan said. "I won two out of three."
Both will be the first to say nothing is just about them, though. Their concern is the team and how to string together some wins after the Blue Devils have started 1-3.
"We're having way too many turnovers right now," Ryan said. "The shots just aren't falling, either. But, we've had some good practices here lately."
"We've been working real hard in practice," Ross said. "If we keep hustling, it will pay off. Last year, we got off to a real fast start and finished slow. This year, we hope we can reverse that."