That's the way the school years seem to fly by for us sportswriters. Wasn't it just a year or two ago when the Reed girls hoops team strung together 88 straight wins and won three straight Nevada large-school state titles. Those memories are vivid as if they were yesterday for some, like my wife, who was a member of those first two championship teams. But in reality, the last of those came 18 years ago.
I've written a column at the beginning and end of each school year for quite a few years now. I remember the afternoon I typed up a few words speculating about the 2010-11 school year. It seems like that was last week but it was actually nine months ago. Where does the time go?
Like every year in recent memory, this past school year saw Sparks-area athletes and teams put together stellar seasons and rack up many accolades. The Spanish Springs and Sparks boys soccer teams, Reed girls basketball team and Spanish Springs baseball squad all gave us championship memories by capturing Northern region titles.
There is a special pride involved when you can say you're the best in the North. The athletes on those teams should cherish those moments and memories.
A pair of local freshman could be big names for a few years to come.
At Reed, point guard Gabby Williams was arguably the top player in the Silver State as a freshman. Additionally, she won a state track championship in the high jump and placed in the top three in three other events at last weekend's state track meet.
At Spanish Springs, Myrissa Prince played varsity volleyball,
basketball and softball as a freshman, and was first-team all-league in the latter sport. She is just the second SSHS student-athlete to letter in three different sports as a freshman, the other being sophomore Lyndsey Anderson.
Expect to see Williams and Prince help lead their teams to plenty of successes in the next three years.
The athletes at Sparks, Reed and Spanish Springs make the jobs of our sports staff here at the Tribune enjoyable. We think we know what to expect when we head out to cover a game on a Tuesday night or Saturday afternoon. Some times we're right, but there are countless times each year when we return to the office to share stories about a thrilling upset or unique angle regarding a special local athlete.
Last fall, Dylan Woll lost his father but days later used the gridiron and the Friday Night Lights of northern Nevada high school football to fight through the tears and one of the most trying times of his young life. The courage of the Spanish Springs senior is to be commended. He caught a touchdown that night against perennial state power McQueen. I'm sure his dad was looking down proud as could be.
Thank you Sparks athletes for making our job here at the Tribune a fun one full of fresh, new experiences every year. We won't be turning in our pens and notebooks for shovels and start digging ditches any time soon.
•On another note, it's a good time to share our gratitude for those out there who help us do our jobs. We have a two-man sports staff here at the Trib and most days of the high school sports seasons, we've got more than two events that need covered.
There were more than a few Saturdays this spring where we had six doubleheaders, between baseball and softball at three Sparks high schools, that all needed coverage. The newspaper has not sprung for one of those machines that helps us be in multiple places at the same time, so we rely on volunteers at our local schools to help us get the job done.
Reed softball scorekeeper Connie Gammon, Spanish Springs softball scorekeeper Frank Lawrence, Spanish Springs baseball scorekeeper Rick Baird and Sparks baseball scorekeeper Janice Bria are all-stars when it comes to keeping an accurate, clean scorebook and catching us up when we're running from game to game throughout the spring. We at the Trib owe you a special thanks for helping us do our jobs and relay the fine accomplishments of our local prep athletes to our loyal readers. You're the best.
Dan Eckles is the Sparks Tribune's sports editor. He can reached via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org