Archive for September 2011
There is a certain excitement about Fridays in football season. It's the day before game day, of course. But when Washington State is on the road, it's also travel day. And today we travel to a new Pac-12 city. Boulder, Colorado. Read on.
Powered by Zach Bruce on the ground and Conner Johnson through the air, the University Titans turned back the Mt. Spokane Wildcats 31-28 in a Greater Spokane League football game in a key 3A showdown Thursday at Joe Albi Stadium.
Here's our story.
NOTE: I'll be tweeting at the Ferris/Central Valley game tonight. You can follow me at: srpreps
Brenden Kichton can score big for a defenseman but there's much more to his game.
No surprises from Thursday's practice, as Washington State spent the usual hour-plus fine-tuning the game plan for Saturday's game at Colorado. Read on.
After a season on KREM/KSKN, Spokane Shock games in 2012 will be televised on KHQ/SWX. KHQ will air the season opener, the remaining eight homes will be on SWX.
Also, WR Brandon Thompkins officially re-signed with the Shock. A late season addition in 2011, Thompkins had 17 catches for 200 yards in four games.
More on Thompkins below.
It didn't take the Spokane Chiefs long to clear up their over-age situation.
A day after Darren Kramer was returned from Ottawa they traded Matt Marantz to Lethbridge for a fourth-round pick in the next Bantam Draft.
Kramer gave the Chiefs four 20's and Western Hockey League rules only allow a team three. With a deadline early next week to get to three, the Chiefs moved.
“We felt it was good for the Chiefs and Matt Marantz to get this deal done as soon as possible,” general manager Tim Speltz said. “Lethbridge is excited to have him join their team. Matt was an important piece to our organization the last two years. We wish him all the best in Lethbridge.”
Marantz was one of eight Chiefs with at least 20 goals last season, finishing with 20 goals and 22 assists and was a plus-21 in 68 games. In his first season he had two goals and three assists in 40 games.
The other 20-year olds are forward Steven Kuhn and defenseman Corbin Baldwin.
Allen Martin has stepped down as
It's not clear whether Martin's departure was of his own volition or not.
Longtime assistant coach Mark Vannatter has taken over on an interim basis, athletic director Brent Monroe said.
When asked if Martin is no longer the head coach, Monroe said, “He's still the head coach.” He referred all other questions to Superintendent Roberta Kramer.
“It's a personnel issue and I can't discuss it,” Kramer said when reached by telephone.
Martin left the team after the Rams’ defeated
Calls were made to Martin, but he was unavailable.
Riverside is 2-2 overall, 1-1 in the Northeast A League. The Rams play host to Newport (4-0, 2-0) on Friday.
Long-time EWU assistant coach Chris Hansen is no longer on the Eagles coaching staff, according to several sources. And why he decided to leave remains a mystery to most, because no one at Eastern is comment on what is being called a “personnel issue.”
You can read the story on Hansen's departure that ran in Thursday morning's S-R here, and you can check out the Big Sky Notebook that includes Eagles defensive coordinator John Graham's take on Saturday opponent, Weber State.
Click the tab below to see this week's menu.
We tried to sleep in today, but that plan failed when the guy upstairs decided to do his vacuuming at the break of dawn. And he's real thorough at it. Real thorough. So thorough we're blaming our headache on him, along with the financial troubles in Greece and the Red Sox collapse. Read on.
The weather was perfect. That's the best thing that came out of Washington State's football practice Wednesday afternoon. Read on.
The Vandals' midweek practice just wrapped up, and we've got notes on injuries (specifically related to Preston Davis and Ryan Bass) and the depth chart below.
Click the tab below to see this week's Washington Associated Press football rankings. Ferris continues atop 4A as the Saxons were a unanimous selection. Central Valley is eighth.
Coeur d'Alene continues atop the 5A rankings in Idaho.
Anybody in the know about prep football probably saw this week coming.
The biggest game of the year in the Greater Spokane League thus far occurs Friday when No. 1-ranked Ferris (4-0) visits eighth-ranked Central Valley (4-0). Kickoff is at 7. Take a nap that day because it could be a long game what with Homecoming activities and the fact that it's televised.
QUESTION: What do you see happening Friday? Of course I'll have my pick in my Pick 6 predictions Thursday.
In a game that will likely decide the top 3A playoff berth, University (1-3) takes on Mt. Spokane (1-3) in the secocnd game of an Albi Stadium doubleheader Thursday. Kickoff is at 7:15.
It's another hump day in football season. Somewhere around noon we draw closer to Saturday's Colorado game than we are to the last Seahawk win. Before we get there, though, we have news, notes and links – and a mea culpa. Read on.
There was something different about Washington State's football practice today, and it wasn't just wrinkle in the offense or a new coverage by the defense. Read on.
Eastern Washington's injury ravaged football team lost another key component from last year's national championship team Tuesday, when it was announced the senior linebacker Zach Johnson will undergo knee surgery and miss the rest of the 2011 season.
You can read more about Johnson and how the Eagles plan to move on without their top tackler on this post from the EWU sports information department. And don't foreget to leave any thoughts you might have on how crippling this latest loss will be to EWU's nose-diving postseason playoff hopes.
It'll be a three-man crew for Gonzaga men's basketball games televised on KHQ/SWX.
Ex-Zags Dan Dickau and Richard Fox will join veteran play-by-play man Greg Heister. For years, Heister teamed with former WSU and NBA player Craig Ehlo.
Dickau was Gonzaga's first first-team A.P. All-American in 2002. He went on to play with several NBA teams from 2002-09. Fox transferred from Colorado and had a successful run with the Bulldogs from 2003-04. Fox joined Tom Hudson on GU's radio broadcasts before deciding to concentrate on his job with Shell Energy of North America. Fox was replaced last year by former Zag Matt Santangelo.
Gonzaga seniors Katelan Redmon (Lewis and Clark) and Kayla Standish (Ellensburg), both first-team All-West Coast Conference last season, have been named to the USA Pan American Games team that will compete in Guadaljara, Mexico next month.
The complete release is below.
Tuesday practice in Pullman. Wednesday, ditto. Thursday, a short practice making sure the game plan is ready. And then Friday Washington State flies to Colorado for its first-ever Pac-12 game. Pretty big week for the Cougars. Read on.
Spokane added eight free agents, including 6-foot-6 wide receiver Aaron Fairooz and former University of Massachusetts quarterback Kyle Havens. Fairooz signed with the Shock in 2010 but spent the last two seasons with CFL Saskatchewan.
Monday was the first day AFL teams could sign free agents. More below on the Shock's newest additions.
Welcome to Pac-12 football. The first week of conference play began last night in Pullman under a few dark clouds. No, we're speaking accurately, not metaphorically. It rained all through practice. Washington State takes today off then hits the field again Tuesday afternoon in preparation for Saturday's conference opener at Colorado. Read on.
Washington State returned to the practice field Sunday night and was met with a rare occurrence for this season. It rained. Hard at times. How did the preparation for Saturday's game at Colorado go? Read on.
Four weeks into the college football season, and the Vandals have just one win (and none against FBS teams). That's certainly not what Robb Akey expected. The good news, though: They have several winnable WAC games left. But there's also more bad news: They've played three of four games at home and still have trips to Virginia (on Saturday) and BYU.
Read on more for more about Idaho's 48-24 loss to Fresno State on Saturday and the Vandals' late-to-be-released basketball schedule.
Oh sure, Washington State didn't have a football game yesterday. But that doesn't mean there isn't news for Cougar fans out there. Far from it. Besides checking in with all of Saturday's action, we have a couple other links we feel you'll want to peruse. Read on.
Here is a link to our story on the Spokane Chiefs' regular-season opener played Saturday night in Kennewick. Internet problems prevented us from tweeting or updating the blog during the game.
Sophomore quarterback DeNarius McGhee threw for one touchdown, ran for another and accounted for 233 yards of total offense in leading 4th-ranked Montana State to a 36-21 Big Sky Conference win over Eastern Washington at Roos Field on Saturday.
Montana State's Jason Cunningham kicked his second 55-yard field as time expired in the first half, giving the visiting Bobcats a 20-14 lead over Eastern Washington at intermission of their Big Sky Conference matchup at Roos Field.
WIth a sellout crowd of 10,422 looking on, MSU marched 90-yard on its first possession and took a 7-0 lead on Cody Kirk's 19-yard run. But Eastern responed in a hurry, as quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell connected with Brandon Kaufman on a 56-yard pass on the Eagles first play from scrimmage, and then found the junior wideout two plays later for a 10-yard touchdown toss.
A 6-yard scoring run by freshman Jordan Talley answered Cunningham's first booming field goal and put Eastern up 114-10 with 9 minutes left in the first half. But a 1-yard scoring run by MSU quarterback DeNarius McGhee, and Cunningham's second field goal, gave the Bobcats their halftime lead.
Eastern leads the total yardage battle 220-216, with Talley accounting for 81 yards on 12 carries for the Eagles. Mitchell finished the half completing seven of eight passes for 142 yards, and did not throw an interception.
MSU's Kirk had 91 yards on 13 carries.
Eastern's offensive line suffered another blow when senior All-American Chris Powers limped off the field, favoring his right knee, and did not return.
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Montana State and Eastern Washington both scored on their first possessions at Roos Field Saturday afternoon, and ended the first quarter tied at 7.
MSU's touchdown came on a 19-yard run by Cody Kirk, and Eastern got its first score on 10-yard pass from Bo Levi Mitchell to Brandon Kaufman, who also caught a long 56-yard pass from Mitchell on Eagles first play of the game.
Mitchell was 2-for-2 for 66 yards in the opening quarter.
Eastern's defense had trouble dealing with Kirk, who carried nine times for 68 yards.
The Eagles had a chance to take their first lead since early in their season, but 44-yard field goal by Mike Jarrett said wide right.
That drive was set up by a Matt Johnson interception, the 17th of his career, which moved him into a second-place tie with Kurt Schulz and Jackie Kellogg on the Eagles' all-time list, just one behind Mike Richter's career-best 18.
The Spokane Chiefs open the Western Hockey League season tonight at Tri-City. We visited with Don Nachbaur and Tim Speltz about the expectations. From the Americans side, The Tri-City Herald had a story with a couple of veterans and bios on the team.
Will head out shortly for the game. I'll be blogging and tweeting (srtrim@twitter) from the Toyota Center.
Week 4 of the college football season, and this should be the biggest crowd of the year so far to see the Idaho football team. There's little doubt about that, after just over half the Dome was full for the first two games of the year.
Read below for more on the Vandals' encounter with Fresno State (2 p.m., WAC Network).
Got a list of things to do today, being that one of them isn't to cover a Washington State football game. The first was to sleep in. That's done. Second, post. In the process. Finally, watch college football. Just as soon as I get this done. But we're not blowing our morning post off, nosiree. We've got Washington State basketball, Pac-12 football and a tease from our Sunday story. Read on.
Central Valley took home the bacon, topping rival University 27-14 in the Greasy Pig game Friday.
Ring my bell … and that's what Mead did to Mt. Spokane in the Battle for the Bell.
Clarkston tops Cheney in Great Northern League opener and roundup.
Scores and statistics here.
Pictured above is CV's Eli Wiecking catching a 56-yard TD pass from Gaven Deyarmin.
Wide receiver Adron Tennell, who became a key receiver for Spokane over the last half of the season, has signed to return to the Shock. He's the third player to return, joining DB Marquise Charles and OL Ben Ossai.
The 6-foot-5 Tennell, a University of Oklahoma product, had 42 catches for 469 yards and 13 touchdowns in six games. He had five TD receptions against Utah in the Shock's outdoor game at Albi Stadium.
The exclusive signing period, during which AFL teams can re-sign players form last year's roster, ends Saturday. Spokane figures to announce several more players in the next week or two when their contracts are approved by the league office. A couple of players, including QB Erik Meyer, who were on injured reserve are expected to sign when they receive medical clearance.
More on Tennell here.
David Pendergraft, one of the most popular Zags as a player, has joined the athletic department as director of athletic giving.
Pendergraft finished his GU playing career in 2008 after starring at Brewster High. He became an instant fan favorite with his heady play and non-stop hustle. He was first-team All-WCC as a senior in 2008.
Pendergraft has been a member of Leadership Northwest, a Christian non-profit organization, since 2009 and is the youngest of 10 board members who work with business leaders, local government and school officials to align community concerns and activities.
More on Pendo here.
Once again Portland appears to be the class of the U.S. Division in the Western Conference of the Western Hockey League. But the Spokane Chiefs aren't conceding anything. Though the Winterhawks, who sent an unheard of 15 players to NHL camps and the Chiefs just four, appeared to have a big edge on paper last year, the Chiefs pushed them to the last weekend before losing the No. 1 seed for the playoffs and then they took the Winterhawks to six games in the Conference finals.
And Tri-City, which had won the previous four U.S. titles, wasn't far behind and should be in the mix again. However, the Americans found out Thursday that potential over-ager Brendan Shinniman was being sent to the AHL, while the word is the Chiefs are getting Dominik Uher back from Pittsburgh before Saturday's game in Tri.
The team-by-team caps are below, written last week.
Good morning and welcome to a Friday without Washington State football. The only one until the season ends later this fall – and yes, starting today it is officially fall. But without a lot from Pullman, this autumn starts with a surprisingly light slate. Read on.
Mead avenged a loss to Mt. Spokane a year ago, sweeping the Wildcats in a Greater Spokane League match at Mt. Spokane. Here's our story.
Pictured above getting a kill is Mead outside hitter Hannah Zalopany.
When push came to shove, the Lewis and Clark Tigers did most of it, topping the Gonzaga Prep Bullpups 31-21 in the opener at Joe Albi Stadium, while North Central evened its record at 2-2 with a 17-10 win over the Shadle Park Highlanders.
The final practice of the bye week went off without a hitch, with Washington State dropping the pads and going without the hitting. Meanwhile, a freshman is emerging on the defensive line. Read on.
Eastern Washington's winless football team will take on 4th-ranked Montana State in its 2011 home opener on Saturday.
Kickoff is set for 4 p.m. at Roos Field, and the Eagles expect to have their hands full with the Bobcats' versatile sophomore quarterback DeNarius McGhee, the subject of this story that ran in Thursday morning's S-R. In addition, I've included this link to the weekly game notes posted by EWU's sports information department, and this link to what MSU's sports info folks have to say about the upcoming game.
And, as promised, here's the link to a story on how the Eagles are coping with all of the injuries in their offensive line that is scheduled to run in Friday morning's S-R.
Here's a feature on Mead lineman James Volz (pictured above), who has overcome a health issue to succeed in athletics. In the classroom he's off-the-charts smart. This is the centerpiece feature of our Thursday Prep Page.
HERE are other links to Prep Page stories and miscellaneous items:
COLUMN: If you haven't watched a Coeur d'Alene football game, I would urge you to do so. The Vikings are a mighty fine team.
NOTEBOOK: John Owen resigns as West Valley's wrestling coach.
PICK 6: Here are my weekly prep football picks. I rebounded last week, going 5-1.
BRIEFLY: Lewis and Clark girls basketball standout Devyn Galland is headed to the University of Oregon.
ALSO: I'll be at the Albi doubleheader tonight. I'll post frequent tweets. You can follow me on Twitter at: srpreps
One more day of practice lies ahead for the Washington State football team during its bye week. But before we schlep on out to Rogers Field to sweat a bit, let's catch up on what's happening around Pullman and the rest of the Pac-12 on this fine Thursday. Read on.
The Spokane Chiefs have a goal, to be playing an Eastern Conference team next spring. The first step to getting there is to get rid of B.C. Division rivals, the focus of today's capsules.
The Idaho football team is prepping for its WAC opener and final game with Fresno State before the Bulldogs jump to the Mountain West. I talked to Robb Akey and offensive coordinator Steve Axman after practice and have an update on the Vandals (1-2) below.
Yes Jeff Tuel is allowed to throw at practice. But, no, he's not allowed to use his left arm as much as he would like just yet. That, and other notes, from Wednesday practice. Read on.
Click the tab below to see this week's Idaho prep football rankings. Coeur d'Alene (4-0) continues to lead 5A.
You have to check this out. West Valley is ranked No. 1 in 2A in new computerized football rankings by the Tacoma News Tribune. Here's the link.
In 4A, Ferris is 17th. In 2A, Cheney is eighth, East Valley is 0th and Deer Park is 17th. In 1A, Freeman is 12th and Newport is 15th.
For the first time in a long time, Mary Goodwin, the mother of Ferris senior quarterback Ben Goodwin, is breathing on her own. She was able to do so about 12 hours after a double lung transplant.
“She's up and alert and has the great wit that she always has,” Ferris coach Jim Sharkey said, reading a text he received.
Unless waranted, this will be the last update. Keep Mary in your thoughts and prayers.
The Central Division produced the Western Hockey League champion last year and the Kootenay Ice should be among the contenders again this year.
That's the same team the Chiefs humbled in the Outdoor Game. So, if the Ice is a contender are the Chiefs?
Spokane used it's Eastern Conference trip last year to jell into a team. It came at a good time, when the team was 2-5 and struggling under first year coach Don Nachbaur. The team doesn't take off for the Central Division until the end of November, but Kootenay doesn't fall into that trip because of the close proximity of Cranbrook.
I don't know if I'm reading my schedule right, but the Chiefs travel there for the first time on Dec. 30 and play three times up there, just twice here, the first Jan. 28.
The Central capsules follow and a small Prince Albert cap will be added to yesterday's Eastern Division post shortly.
BTW: Former Chief Jared Spurgeon scored the first and last goal in Minnesota's 4-3 win over Edmonton last night.
Did you hear that boom last night about 8:15? The one that was so loud it spread throughout the nation, rattling windows in college presidents' offices from here to Austin and beyond? If you did, read on.
Andy Olson has completed his assistant coaching staff with the addition of Clay Harrell (OL, DL coach) and Stanley Franks (DBs). More on Olson's staff, returning players and AFL news here. (That's Harrell pictured above).
Franks, you may recall, suffered a serious knee injury last season with CFL B.C. Here's more on his recovery.
Washington State returned to the practice field Tuesday for bye week work, and there were a few less Cougars than expected. We cover the practice and coach Paul Wulff's press conference, so read on.
ESPNW has a final take on Courtney Vandersloot's rookie season in the WNBA.
I'm reposting this from Friday because there's a good conversation going about how football games are scheduled. Feel free to check in with your thoughts.
It's rivalry week in Greater Spokane League football. A couple of interesting games: Gonzaga Prep (2-1) vs. Lewis and Clark (2-1), which nearly upset Mead last week, on Thursday at Albi; Mt. Spokane (1-2) vs. Mead (2-1) at Albi on Friday; and Central Valley (3-0) at University (1-2), which stunned G-Prep last week.
I'll check in Thursday with my Pick 6 predictions. I'm sure I'll include those three games this week.
What are your thoughts on those games or anything prep related. This is your thread to start the week.
Click the tab below for more.
The Eastern Division of the Eastern Conference is where the Spokane Chiefs became a team last year, turing a slow start into one of their best Western Hockey League seasons, 48 wins, 102 points.
This year East teams visit the Arena and some are coming early, Brondon on Oct. 12, the third home game and Prince Albert two days later. Saskatoon is here by the end of October with Regina and Swift Current coming in November and Moose Jaw the first home game after the Christmas break.
The preview of all but PA are here, from the writers that cover the teams. If we can come up with a Raiders capusule later, we'll add it.
With the Western Hockey League season opening Thursday and the Spokane Chiefs playing their first gameon Saturday, it's time to pick up the pace.
Today I'll post capsules from the Eastern Division of the Eastern Conference, with the Central Division on Wednesday and the B.C. Division on Thursday, when we'll have our overview of the WHL. The caps for the U.S. Division are set for Friday.
A look at the Chiefs will be in Saturday's paper and then I'll head to Tri-City for the opener. It does't seem that long ago I was commuting to TC for the playoff games. The good news is that regular-season games only have 5 minutes of OT and a shootout so there should be no 2 a.m. arrivals.
At last report, only Brenden Kichton has returned of the four players the Chiefs sent to NHL camps, leaving the roster shy of Darren Kramer, Blake Gal and Dominik Uher.
One last thing, former Spokane captain Jared Cowen scored both goals, after getting into a scrap that cost him 17 minutes of ice time, for Ottawa last night in a 4-2 loss to the Maple Leafs.
Even though we pretty much took the day off yesterday, we still have some Washington State news to share, so read on.
Good morning and welcome to the lone bye week of the Washington State football season. A week filled with wonder. As in, “I wonder what's going to happen with the ACC, Big 12, Pac-12, you know, college sports, this week?” We have more from Sunday, so read on.
There's a new No. 1 in the Tacoma News Tribune's 4A state football rankings - Ferris.
And the Saxons vaulted to No. 1 in the Seattle Times' rankings.
I was planning on posting about Eastern Washington's 17-14 Big Sky Conference football loss to Montana earlier this morning from Missoula. But, then, I was planning to blog and tweet throughout the game.
So cue the wireless lament? Yep, couldn't get on in the stadium press box or motel room. Fortunately our columnist John Blanchette also made the trip and was able to send my game story for me. You can link to it, along with Blanchette's column and related stories below.
COUGARS • UPDATED: 10 A.M.
We're in the San Diego airport – Lindbergh Field for those of you who know, and enjoy, your history – and we have a few minutes. So we thought we would post the Washington State stories before we get on the plane. We'll be more when we get up in the air. Read on.
It's doubtful the Coeur d'Alene football team could have played better Saturday in its 55-6 win over Whitney of Rocklin, Calif. And Lake City lost in a thriller to Rio Linda (Calif.).
Click here to read the story.
To be honest, the computer was put away and I was on my way out of Qualcomm when I remember I had yet to blog. We have some notes and links, so read on.
Like it has done against big-name opponents in the past, Idaho hung with Texas A&M for a while on Saturday evening. But the Aggies had far too many weapons, and the Vandals' offense was far too inept. A&M clobbered UI 37-7 at Kyle Field in College Station.
Read below for reaction from Robb Akey and his crew.
The morning cloud cover has burnt off, there is a slight breeze with an ocean scent on it, and the sun is shining. Just doesn't seem like football weather. Read on.
It's overcast and in the 60s in San Diego. Just like every morning every day I've ever been in San Diego. And people wonder why some of us don't think it's paradise. Before we head up to Jack Murphy Stadium – the way I see it, when you name a stadium after a sportswriter, then it should always be named after a sportswriter, not a computer company – this afternoon, we settle in and give you links to everything you need to know for your Saturday football watching. Read on.
With the Vandals traveling to meet Texas A&M of the Big 12, Idaho athletic director Rob Spear on Friday posted a message on Twitter that must have resonated with UI fans: “Off to College Station. Time for the Vandals to beat a BCS team.” Idaho last upended a member of a BCS conference on Sept. 23, 2000. The opponent was Washington State, and Tom Cable was in his first year as coach.
Downing the ninth-ranked Aggies, 351/2-point favorites, in front of nearly 90,000 fans would a stunning achievement. Or as Idaho assistant coach Jason Gesser put it on his blog, it would be “the biggest upset of the 2011 college football season.” At least so far.
Read on for more about the Vandals (1-1) and the key things to watch against A&M.
Here's a link to our Mt. Spokane/Shadle football story from Thursday. Above, Chase Naccarato of Mt. Spokane makes one of his 11 catches.
Former Gonzaga women's basketball star Courtney Vandersloot (above, throwing out a first pitch at a Mariner's game early this season - I just like the pix) completed her first WNBA season on Sunday and was named to the All-Rookie team on Friday.
The No. 3 overall draft pick is surrounded by some familiar names, including top pick Maya Moore, who went to Minnesota from UConn, Oklahoma's Danielle Robinson and Texas A&M's Danielle Adams, both of San Antonio, and Australian Liz Cambage of Tulsa.
The voting was done by coaches, who couldn't vote for their own player. Moore was rookie of the year after leading the Lynx from the worst record to the best. Moore and Robinson were named by all 11 opposing coaches, Vandersloot got 10 and the other two nine.
Vandersloot (the subject of a Lukens at Large inteview) set Chicago's single-season assist record and made the WNBA all-star team. She started 26 of 34 games and averaged 6.5 points and 3.7 assists. She will play in Turkey before returning for her second season with Chicago next summer.
Sitting in SeaTac waiting for my flight to San Diego, just like a bunch of Washington State supporters. That group includes president Elson S. Floyd. He's got a bit larger entourage than I – mine includes a carry-on and computer bag. Bet he doesn't have to write a blog post either. Read on.
Washington State coach Paul Wulff met with the media for the final time before Saturday's game at San Diego State, then led the Cougars through a practice Thursday afternoon. For more, read on.
In five weeks, Gonzaga will host its annual Kraziness in the Kennel, which essentially serves as the season tip-off for the public. The event, which typically features a scrimmage, 3-point shooting contest, etc., will begin at 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 22, with the doors opening at 3. (Friendly advice: Get there early as lines in past have extended by the soccer field).
The Spokane Chiefs used their defensive strength to strengthen their goaltender competition today, trading Tyler Vanscourt , 19, to Prince Albert for Luke Lee-Knight, 18, and a fifth-round pick in next summer's bantam draft.
Lee-Knight joins second-year goalie Mac Engel and rookie Zach Rakochy, also both 18, while 19-year old Jacob Edwards was released.
General manager Tim Speltz said in a release that it strengthens the draft as well as the goaltending but in appearing in 3 games, Engel has a 1.89 GAA while Rakochy is 1.54. So how this plays out remains to be seen.
The Chiefs play Tri-City tonight at Eagles in the sixth of their seven preseason games. The Chiefs are 4-0-0-1, the Americans are 3-2-0-0, which includes a 3-2 shootout win over Spokane in TC last Saturday.
Click the tab below for this week's menu.
Washington State's first road trip of the year starts in about a day, as the Cougars head to the southern part of Southern California for their matchup with San Diego State. We head to our matchup with a handful of Double-Doubles. Read on.
Washington State's last full-pad practice of the week Wednesday seemed to engender a bit more intensity out of the coaching staff. There was a reason for that. Read on.
Gonzaga has yet to announce its complete men's basketball schedule, but two more games were revealed Wednesday, thanks to press releases from GU opponents.
The Zags will face Hawaii in Vancouver, B.C., on Nov. 19. The neutral-site game will be a homecoming for Gonzaga center Robert Sacre, who played at Handsworth Secondary School in North Vancouver. GU's Kelly Olynyk is from Kamloops, B.C., roughly 220 miles from Vancouver. Freshman Kevin Pangos is from Newmarket, Ontario.
Gonzaga will entertain Longwood on Feb. 27. The game will serve as Senior Night and fall between GU's final regular-season WCC game (at San Diego on Feb. 25) and the beginning of the conference tournament in Las Vegas (first round on Feb. 29, semifinals on March 3). Longwood, located in Farmville, Va., was 12-19 last season.
An update on a Then and Now from a few years back with Sonya Gaubinger Elliott, who played basketball at U-Hi and EWU. The writing she did to recover from personal tragedy is going to be published next month. She is also coaching the West Seattle HS team.
I hope you'll take the time to read this story about Brooke and Andy Collins. It's a touching, heart-breaking and inspiring story. I covered both “kids” during their high school days. Brooke played at Shadle Park, Andy was the opponent in a football playoff game.
No smart comments today. We've got too much to link, including a lot about Washington State, so we'll get right to it. Read on.
Eastern Washington coach Beau Baldwin insists their are several factors involved in the Eagles anemic rushing numbers so far this season.
Usually Idaho football practices are noisy only because of Robb Akey's booming voice. But on Tuesday afternoon, the Vandals blasted something that vaguely resembled crowd noise through speakers at their outdoor practice facility, hoping to replicate the atmosphere they'll play in on Saturday evening at Texas A&M. It was loud, but probably not nearly as loud as 85,000-plus fans crammed into the Aggies' Kyle Field.
For more on UI's practice and a conversation with first-year offensive line coach John McDonell, a Spokane native, click below.
When Washington State took the practice field Tuesday afternoon, the defense was rested and ready to begin preparing for San Diego State. When it left the field, there was a bit of a gap in the middle. Read on.
Just a quick post for the link our game story from Courtney Vandersloot and the Chicago Sky ending the WNBA regular season with a loss at defending champion Seattle. (Monday exhaustion and Tuesday forgetfulness, a bad combo.)
BTW, in the photo above, Vandersloot's idol, Sue Bird, fouled her. As she bumped Vandersloot off-balance, Vandersloot's hand flew out and smacked Bird in the mouth, causing a slight bloody lip. Afterwards, with a shy smile, Vandersloot said, “Yeah, I felt bad about that.”
Although not so surprising to me, there's been an interesting development in Greater Spokane League football the first two weeks. It will be the topic of my column Thursday.
Click the tab below to read more.
ALSO: You can follow me live on Twitter throughout the week (@srpreps). I'll be tweeting Thursday at the Mt. Spokane/Shadle Park game, Friday at the Albi doubleheader and Saturday at the Kibbie Dome in Moscow for the Coeur d'Alene and Lake City games. Five games in three days. That's prep football nirvana.
You know the old saying about no rest for the wicked? Well, I must have been awfully bad lately, because it's been impossible to sleep. Or maybe it's all the nightmares about leaving my seat in the press box to use the facilities and missing two Washington State touchdowns. Hasn't really happened yet, but seemed like it was possible the first two weeks of the season. Read on.
The Vandals are 1-1 with their toughest test of the season Saturday at No. 9 Texas A&M. Says Robb Akey, “It will be the best nonconference team we’ve played since I’ve been here.” And that includes Akey's first game as Vandals coach, against top-ranked USC in 2007.
Read on for more from Akey.
The Cougars are off the practice field after their first day of prep for San Diego State. It was a day of teaching. We have some notes, so read on.
Eastern Washington, which dropped from first to 10th in this week's The Sports Network/Fathead.com FCS poll, will be without starting running back Mario Brown when it takes on 12th-ranked Montana in Missoula on Saturday.
Brown, a sophomore who rushed for a team-high 33 yards on 15 carries in Eastern's first two games, was suspended for one game by his own university and the Big Sky Conference for throwing a punch following last Saturday's 30-17 road loss to South Dakota.
You can read more about the suspension here, and you can access the weekly game notes supplied by EWU's sports information department here. In addition, I've included this link to the weekly notes posted by the Big Sky office.
So far this morning two groups of geese have flown over, honking loudly as they head south. Must be Washington State fans en route to San Diego already. Anything to get out of the heat, right? Read on.
UPDATE: Vandersloot finishes with five points and two assists in 22 minutes of an 81-70 loss.
Vandersloot hits a 3 late in first half but her Chicago Sky trail Seattle Storm 41-33. Vandersloot is 1-5 with one board, two assists, two fouls in 13 minutes.
Getting from the interstate to Key Arena, with the Mercer exit closed, was nothing compared to getting on-line at Key Arena, but we did. Didn't need to look up with Courtney Vandersloot came out for warmups.
There was a story today about her rookie season in the WNBA (the by-line was left off, but yes, I took a break from hockey and rodeo to talk to her), as well as a little catch-up with local players Briann January and Angie Bjorklund, who are injured.
There could be a near-record crowd here because of Vandersloot. There was a Gonzaga alumni function before the game and another after. The GU women's team is here, plaeyrs in Sky T's, and the City of Kent, where Vandersloot went to high school, is doing something.
We spent some time talking with and listening to Paul Wulff on his Sunday night conference call with the media, which allows us to put together a follow story and pass along even more nuggets to you. Read on.
Eastern Washington's football fortunes took another hit in Vermillion, S.D. on Saturday when the top-ranked Eagles suffered a 30-17 upset loss to the University of South Dakota.
You can read the game story that ran in Sunday's S-R here; you can access the post-game report that was posted by EWU's sports information office here; you can check out what USD's sports info folks posted about the game here, and you can take a look at the game story that ran in Sunday's Sioux Falls Argus Leader here.
It was about this time 10 years ago today everyone's life changed. Seems like only yesterday, to be honest. I don't know what the printed word's equivalent to a moment of silence is, but let's take one. … Thanks. Now you can read our usual morning after post, though there is little usual, compared to the past three years, about what follows.
That was total domination. Nothing else. Count me one of those surprised by the depth of it. Read on.
Here are links to our Friday prep football stories.
CENTRAL VALLEY rallies against Mead.
LEWIS AND CLARK also rallies, one of four unbeaten teams in GSL.
ROUNDUP: Colfax fends off DeSales.
Well it's time for the pregame post. We have something to say. Nothing big. Kinda boring. Heck, read on only if you're bored.
It's game day on the Palouse, with the sun shining (it's going to probably hit the low 90s during the game), the fans sleeping off the revelry (loud last night) and coffee warming up (not one to waste money, I'm warming up yesterday's leftovers). As usual, we have links to get you ready for the games. Read on.
It’s early in the season, but not too early to start gauging Idaho’s chances at cobbling together the necessary six or sevens wins to become bowl eligible. On that count, last week’s puzzling performance in a loss to Bowling Green did real damage. But Robb Akey, with the long term in mind too, wonders if the setback “could be an inspirational deal for us.”
More about the Vandals, the most winnable games on the schedule, and their game with North Dakota today at 2 p.m. below.
Eastern Washington, still ranked No. 1 among FCS schools ventures to Vermillion, S.D., to take on South Dakota in the first of three road games to open the season.
Coach Beau Baldwin is looking for a physical battle against the Coyotes, and you can read more on what he expects in this game advance that will run in Saturday morning's S-R.
Maybe I am getting old enough to retire. After all, something happened yesterday afternoon that, as soon as it was done, I said to myself, “hey, you've got to blog about that.” Then it disappeared, only to reappear in my head this afternoon when I walked past the same spot in the Bohler Gym hall. And I said to myself, “hey dumb&%#, you forgot to blog about that.” So now I am. Read on.
The game is tomorrow. Before then, Washington State's football players will have more film work, they'll have a walk-through and they'll head off to the hotel for meetings and a good night's rest. Then there is the game, with UNLV heading up from the desert to challenge them. It's been a challenging week already. Read on.
Quite a light afternoon for Washington State, as Paul Wulff's press conference was delayed and practice was all about fine-tuning the game plan for Saturday. Read on.
Sorry I'm late posting this. I just got back from a quick trip to Tri-Cities to see my dad who suffered a mild stroke. He's going to have surgery to unblock a clogged artery Saturday. He was up last weekend and watched the Central Valley/Mt. Spokane game with me.
Anyway, click the tab below for more.
Several GU items of interest. Bulldogs forward Kelly Olynyk scored in double figures twice this week for Canada at the FIBA Americas Championship in Argentina. Here's a link to Olynyk's stats throughout the tournament. He's fifth in scoring and third in rebounding for Canada, which is 2-5 in Group X standings and saw its Olympic hopes dashed by a loss to Panama.
Battle in Seattle pre-sale tickets for Spokane residents and members of the State Farm Battle in Seattle mailing list go on sale Saturday at 10 a.m. at Ticketmaster outlets (three Fred Meyer locations in Spokane, Veradale). More here and at ticketmaster.com. Gonzaga will face Arizona, which advanced to the Elite Eight last year and is 3-0 against the Bulldogs all time, at KeyArena.
UPDATE: CBS will televise the Battle in Seattle, which tips at 1 on Saturday, Dec. 17.
Santa Clara, which appeared to be positioned to challenge Gonzaga, Saint Mary's and BYU at the top of the WCC, lost senior forward Marc Trasolini to a torn ACL in an exhibition contest in his home province of B.C. More here and here.
I've written this before but it bears repeating. The football season has a bit of a “Groundhog Day” feel to it. Every day, while not the same as the previous one, is really similar to its corresponding day the week before. If it's Thursday, we must be blogging. And then heading over to Washington State for Paul Wulff's press conference. And blogging. And heading to practice. And blogging. See? But nothing happens on any day until we put together your morning post, which we have now done. Again. So read on.
Justing Veltung, Idaho's marquee receiver, is back at practice and participating in individual and position workouts. That's the good news for Veltung and the Vandals. The bad news: Veltung has yet to be cleared for contact drills in practice. He said it “looks iffy right now” that he'll play on Saturday vs. North Dakota (2 p.m., Kibbie Dome).
Read on for more about Veltung and Preston Davis, Idaho's other top wideout.
The temperature is rising as we move toward Saturday, with the high that day expected to be in the low 90s. Wonder how the guys from UNLV, where the temperature is expected to hit 102 degrees tomorrow, will adjust to the cool weather? We have more from practice, so read on.
The sun is just starting to peek its head over the wheat field behind my apartment as I begin this post this morning, so you know it's early. And it's also already beginning to get warm, so you know it's early September. Read on.
Washington State is off the practice field on hot, sunny Tuesday in the Palouse, the first such day this season with senior Marshall Lobbestael as the man in charge of the offense. We have some notes about how it went, so read on.
Paul Wulff spoke for a little more than 10 minutes with the Pac-12 media, than another 12 with the local today. If I were in his shoes, I would walk out of the second one thinking, “There are 22 minutes of my life I'll never get back.” But it's also 22 minutes we summarize on the link. Read on.
Did Week 1 offer any surprises to you?
It did to me. Click the tab below to read more.
It was kind of quiet on the practice field last night, what with school out, so few spectators were about. And the Cougars were missing quite a few players due to a virus. Read on.
It's late but we promised you a post, so read on.
Idaho football coach Robb Akey talked about responding to the loss to Bowling Green and whole bunch of other things this morning. Read on for a summary.
Today marks the unofficial end of summer, the last day to wear white pants at the Hamptons. At least that's what my friend Jay Gatsby used to tell me. But it's also the beginning of the college football season, when half the teams are still undefeated and possibilities seem endless. Except maybe in the state south of us. Read on.
Paul Wulff held his day-after – or, to be more accurate, evening-after – press conference today and we'll share everything we didn't put in our story. Read on.
Another beautiful September morning in Seattle, and a great day to make the scenic drive back to Spokane. But before we do, we need to look a little deeper into the scare Eastern Washington put into the University of Washington at Husky Stadium Saturday afternoon.
On the day after UW held off the confident, but error-prone Eagles 30-27, there are plenty of related comments, opinions and stories to digest — including this piece written by S-R columnist John Blanchette, and this game story that appeared in Sunday morning' s Seattle Time.
For more, read on. And be sure to check back for an early look at my day-after story on the game that will be posted here later this afternoon.
The first week of the Pac-12 is now in the books, though it seems, after listening to Larry Scott's comments in Dallas, it might be the only season of the Pac-12. Washington State's first week of 2011 is now in the books, though it seems, after reading some of the message board comments, a few fans believe it might be over before it really gets going. We look at all that, plus add in some comments from the postgame, on the link, so read on.
I just finished my game story on Eastern Washington's 30-27 road loss to the Washington Huskies, and you can take a look at it here once it's posted. In addition, you see what the Eagles' sports information department posted on the near-upset here, and you can read what Seattle Times columnist Steve Kelley thought about the game here.
I will have a day-after story on the game in Monday's S-R and will link to it and several other related stories — including S-R columnist John Blanchette's take on the game — tomorrow. I will also have additional thoughts and post-game comments, so please check back.
And in the meantime, feel free to leave any comments you might have on the Eagles season-opening effort on this blog post.
Don't think anybody who is reading this doesn't already know about Jeff Tuel and his broken left clavicle. So we're not going to talk about … oh, yes we are. But we also have some other things to cover about WSU's 64-21 domination of Idaho State, so read on.
Washington capitalized on another big Eastern mistake to score the first touchdown of the second half and leads 27-20 going into the third quarter.
The Huskies were forced to pun on their secons possession of the third period, but the kick bounced off the helmet of EWU's Darriell Beaumonte and UW recovered on the Eagles' 27. They scored three plays later on a 6-yard pass from Keith Price to Kasen Williams, but Eastern answered with a 73-yard scoring drive that was capped by a 43-yard pass from Bo Levi Mitchell to Greg Herd.
UW scored its first touchdown of the game after Matt Johnson muffed a punt and set the Huskies up with a short first.
We got here early today because there is one truisim in college football: Something will always be messed up for the first game. And that happened, as there is a new way to get on the Internet in the Martin Stadium press box and I'm locked out. Luckily, we always have a backup plan. So we're able to present our pregame notes. Read on.
EWU opens its 2010 college football season at 4 p.m. today against the Washington Huskies in Seattle. You can read the game advance that appeared in this morning's S-R here, and check back for quarterly updates on the game. You can also keep tabs on the Eagles by following me at http://twitter.com/srbergum.
Note: We've knocked offline at Husky Stadium, precluding any updates or tweets for the time being.
Here's a link to our Friday Greater Spokane League roundup.
Centra Valley quarterback Gaven Deyarmin is pictured above scoring a touchdown.
There are so many links to get through this morning, they seem to be overwhelming Firefox. So I had to put up this morning's post in two phases. Read on.
The prep is all done for Washington State. The players are on the way to the hotel and tomorrow they'll open the 2011 football season in Martin Stadium against Idaho State. We have more, so read on.
Here's a link to our GSL story from Thursday's openers.
Two Pac-12 teams opened their 2011 season last night, with one really happy with a rout and the other, not so much. Read on for more on that, plus Washington State news.
It wasn't mentioned in the postgame press conference by Robb Akey or any of his players, but early this morning Idaho athletic director Rob Spear posted on Twitter that Akey's mother, Doreen, passed away before the Vandals' season opening loss to Bowling Green. “Our condolences to Coach Akey and his family on the passing of his mother before the game yesterday,” Spear tweeted.
I've got more on that and Idaho's 32-15 setback below.
As promised, I've including this link to the story on Eastern Washington's small forward-turned cornerback Alden Gibbs, who will make his first start as a member of the Eagles defense in Saturday's season opener against Washington in Seattle.
And I've also this link to an entertaining Q&A Eastern's sports information department did on senior quarterback Bo Levi Mitchell. In addition, you can read more about the five players who will serve EWU's captains this fall right here.
New Bonners Ferry football coach Steve Fisher resigned after one game.
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COUGARS • UPDATED: 7:30 P.M.
One less day until the 2011 football season begins. We have some thoughts after the Thursday run through. Read on.
Eastern Washington's defending NCAA Division I championship football team will open its 2011 season against the University of Washington at 4 p.m. on Saturday at Husky Stadium in Seattle.
“We're ready. I wish we could play right now,” Bo Levi Mitchell, the Eagles senior quarterback, said earlier this week. And Mitchell's teammates echoed those sentiments.
You can take a look at the S-R feature story on the improvement Mitchell has made since transferring from Southern Methodist in the spring of 2010 here, and you can get more details on the EWU-UW season opener from this post on the Eagles athletic department website and this story the Huskies sports information department issued.
I've included additional links to related articles below, and be sure to check back for a look at the feature story on EWU's senior cornerback Alden Gibbs, a former Eagles basketball player, who will make his first collegiate start against the Huskies.
I'm putting this at the top again because we've had a great continuing conversation.
I would like to see a few athletic directors check in and comment. Don't use your real name. Make something up. But we need to get the point of view of the athletic directors.
Would you support a pay-to-play concept for high school sports? Check out what a school district in Idaho is doing this year.
The college football season kicks off tonight. With that in mind, there is not time for chit-chat. Way too many stories to pass along, from around here first-and-foremost, than up-and-down the West Coast. So many, we had to use up our monthly quota of hypens. And it's only the first. Read on.
All of our prep football previews can be found at this link.
Let's continue the conversation we started on the earlier post. Which teams should we watch for this fall?
Chase Naccarato of Mt. Spokane is pictured above.
Also, here's a link to my column.