My favorite quote of the 2012-13 high school sports season never made it to the paper.
“You must really like the Giants,” Eagle Valley senior Sam Lounsberry said. “You wear Giants stuff everyday.”
Hallelujah. Message almost received.
As Battle Mountain, Eagle Valley, Vail Christian and Vail Mountain tee off the 2013-14 preps year with golf tryouts on Monday, we give our annual rundown on how the Vail Daily covers high school sports and what you can do to help us along.
The San Francisco Giants (and Niners)
Going back to master Lounsberry’s quote, he got it. I do not have a horse in the local feud that is Eagle Mountain and Battle Valley — just making sure you’re staying with me. Same goes with anything involving the Vails (Gore Rangers or Saints.)
Even though they are stinking up the joint this season — after two World Series championships in three years (have I mentioned that recently?) — the Giants are my team. The only time I would ever root against Eagle Valley is if my boys came to Gypsum in the spring to take on the Devils. I would be right behind home plate in full gear, including my very tasteful black-orange-and-white-argyle golf pants, watching Madison Bumgarner outduel Travis Edgar. (Sorry, Trav. Travis, you could take Barry Zito, but Buster Posey would still take you deep.)
I really don’t get the sort of rivalry reaction we’ve seen in football the last two falls. In 2011, I allegedly liked Battle Mountain football better. In 2012, I was apparently on the Eagle Valley bandwagon. (For the record I grew up with the sainted Joe Montana and the 49ers are my team when the leaves turn.)
To review: The Huskies were 9-2, while the Devils were 1-8 in 2011. The next year, Eagle Valley was 8-4 and Battle Mountain 0-10. Control and variable, people! (We’re not meant to use exclamation marks in the paper, but this deserves one.) Hello? Of course, I covered the Huskies more in 2011 and the Devils in 2012 when it came to football.
I don’t give a hoot if you are Devils, Huskies, Saints or Bandonis (I mean, Gore Rangers). The performance on the field determines the coverage. That would be why Huskies boys soccer, Devils football, Saints boys basketball, Devils boys basketball, Eagle Valley wrestler Andy Armstrong, and Huskies boys lax last year got the majority of the coverage last year.
The combined record of those teams and grappler was 108-21 with two state titles and all involved playoff runs. (I also heard the local track teams did pretty well. Make that five state titles with Taylor Alexander, Mack Cooper and the Vail Christian girls 400-meter relay team.)
Bottom line, I root for all the local teams to do well because you think I write “better” articles when your team wins. (Seriously, my job is so much easier after a win. You try talking to a coach after his team has been routed or lost a heartbreaker. It ain’t fun.)
When we get a local game (any combination of the four schools), I root for a close game. I don’t enjoy when the Devils-Huskies football game is 54-0 or 62-0, as has been the case the last two Octobers. Let’s face it. When that happens, readers tend to take it out on me. (Like I have mystical powers.)
Deadlines and calling
That said, just because a squad isn’t going 20-0 and winning a state crown — congratulations, Battle Mountain soccer — doesn’t mean there’s no place for other teams in the paper.
I try to get to as many home games as I can in a season at every school, but, inevitably, there are conflicts. (I jokingly think that the four athletic directors get together and make sure everyone’s at home at the same time or on the road simultaneously.)
If I’m not at your game or you’re on the road, coaches, call me on my cell. Every varsity coach from all four schools has my cell. (If you’ve lost it, coaches, your A.D. has it.) Call, win, lose or draw. That’s the best way to make sure your team is in the paper. Get the kids on the bus and call. And, please, don’t wait until you’ve driven back to Eagle County, dropped off the team and returned home.
We have a 9:30 p.m. deadline. (I don’t make that decision, but I’ve got to follow it.) The earlier you call, the better chance you have of your team making the paper for the next day. If we run out of room in the next day’s edition or coaches call late, I try to put the scores and stories on the web, www.vaildaily.com. But when in doubt, call, and the earlier the better.
And, yes, Mom and Dad, if you take pictures, we’ll take them. Even if they don’t get in with the actual game, I keep all your pictures in an email file and can use them later. This is particularly helpful with sports like cross country, alpine and Nordic skiing and track, when there are not many home events. My email is email@example.com.
Good luck to everyone, especially the Giants and Niners.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934 or via firstname.lastname@example.org.