TAMPA ― Composure is an annual casualty at the Sneaker Soiree.As sure as the Chardonnay and salad dressing flow at the yearly celebration of bay area sports, a moving tale of a youngster’s triumph over adversity ― typically a physical debilitation ― steals the evening.Which leads to 2018 Tampa Catholic graduate Alec Barklage, winner of the Freddie Solomon Moral Courage Award.Diagnosed in early ’18 with Ewing sarcoma after a tumor was discovered in his right fibula, the 6-foot-7 Crusaders pitcher endured 13 particularly grueling chemotherapy cycles before being declared cancer-free Feb. 3.“He saddled up for 13 cycles,” Barklage’s mom, Stacey, said through tears during a video played to the audience at TPepin’s Hospitality Centre. “He is amazing. He did not give up.”Barklage’s award provided the culmination for an evening recognizing feats, fandom and community service on the local sports landscape.Seffner Christian senior Brylee Bartram, who became the nation’s career high school leader in 3-pointers (boy or girl) this past winter, was named a Sports Community Hero. Rick Nafe, retiring after four decades in various roles of major area sports operations, including the last 21 as vice-president of operations for the Rays, was presented the Tom McEwen Community Advocate Award. Related: From Bandit Ball to Super Bowls, Nafe has seen it all in Tampa Bay sports In accordance with the event’s WWE theme ( Wrestlemania 36 will be held at Raymond James Stadium next April), the stage featured ring ropes. All presenters arrived amid billows of manufactured smoke and the sound of a ringside bell.Tampa Bay Sports Commission executive director Rob Higgins, the evening’s emcee, took the stage wearing a championship belt.Shortly thereafter, poignancy descended on the evening, from the top turnbuckle.Immediately preceding Barklage was 5-6 Wharton High senior Moses Sutherland, wildly popular manager for the Wildcats boys basketball team who suited up ― and scored ― in a senior night victory against Armwood.Sutherland, who lost his father to a stroke six years ago, was presented the Under Armour “I Will” Award after serving as manager for the last two seasons. “Senior Night I thought would be a great way to recognize him,” longtime Wildcats coach Tommy Tonelli said. “Not just for what he did for us as a team manager, but even more just giving him that uniform and letting him step on the court if we could possibly make it work.” Sutherland entered the Armwood contest late in the fourth quarter. After missing his first two-handed set shot, he scored twice ― on short jumpers ― and assisted senior buddy Evan Kinsey on a dunk. “The place went bananas,” said Tonelli, whose team won 81-35.“It was magical,” Sutherland added. “It was really nice to get in the game 'cause I wanted to score and all my teammates wanted me to score. I had to do it.”Barklage’s triumph was preceded by physical torment.Due to a gene mutation, his body rejected chemotherapy, Stacey Barklage said. Yet he was forced to endure its frightening side effects, including an accelerated heart rate and muscle spasms, for a series of cycles that included a week-long hospitalization each time.The treatments began at Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital in St. Pete, where Barklage had been giving out toys to pediatric cancer patients only months before his own diagnosis. “I had an allergic reaction (to the chemo),” said Barklage, whose younger brother Dawson began distributing toys when his older sibling fell ill. “I’d black out, I’d forget things.”Nonetheless, with months of treatment still ahead of him, Barklage graduated with his class last May. His first cancer-free scans came a year after his diagnosis. He just completed a second group of scans, which also were clear.“You hear it so many times over and over again that, ‘Oh, you’re gonna beat this, you’re gonna beat this, you got this,’” said Barklage, who will attend FSU.“Finally seeing that the scans are actually clear and that I actually beat it, the weight was lifted off me. Finally I felt normal. I felt like a kid again.” Contact Joey Knight at firstname.lastname@example.org . Follow @TBTimes_Bulls.