Sports Columns

More March magic?

We all know by now that the Big Dance can be - and typically is - a full-court free-for-all.There are no guarantees anymore. Not even in round one. Parity, for better or worse, is here to stay. While college basketball has turned into a watered down product of sorts in recent years, the balance ...

Lasting impression

If there's anything I've learned in 20 years of covering high school athletics, it's the value of patience, persistence and perspective in sports.Almost always in that order.I've accepted the ''three P'' philosophy slowly - and at times begrudgingly - but steadily, both as a fan and an ...

Quiet contenders

The St. Edmond girls basketball program has carved quite a niche for itself in the North Central Conference.The fifth-ranked Gaels are more than ready to take their act to a bigger stage this time around.If it's possible to be simultaneously unassuming and elite, head coach Scott Messerly's ...

Desert uprising

Before Fred Hoiberg became ''The Mayor,'' a different sharp-shooting guard was leading the Iowa State men's basketball team to prominence.These days, Hoiberg is flourishing as the Cyclones' head coach. He's also piquing the interest of NBA franchises with each passing victory. Analysts agree ...

Still grinding that axe

If at first you don't succeed, try, try again.Plan B? These days, a good Internet rant and tell-all book threat seems to do the trick.Former Iowa Hawkeye wide receiver Derrell Johnson-Koulianos returned to the headlines with a vengeance earlier this week after a seemingly spontaneous yet ...

Momentous occasion

Not so long ago, this game, this week and the season in general couldn't get over fast enough for Iowa and Iowa State hoop fans.As recently as 2009-10, the Hawkeyes posted a paltry overall record of 10-22. The Cyclones weren't faring much better, going 15-17 during that long, cold winter. No ...

New heights

CEDAR FALLS - I've always found the end of a state tournament journey to be the best time for reflection and appreciation.I am disappointed for kids who are disappointed in themselves. They accomplish so much, yet parting memories are often tainted by the bitter taste of defeat.It's a natural ...

At long last

It took Dick Tighe 60 seasons and 576 games to get here.The St. Edmond football program's wait was nearly as long: 59 years, 531 trips to the field.Fittingly and finally, Tighe and the Gaels will now cross the championship round's threshold together.St. Edmond defeated Van Meter, 35-14, in a ...

Hawks, Cyclones fail to assuage

AMES - The answers never really came and plenty of doubt remained after Iowa's tidy-turned-tenuous 27-21 victory over Iowa State here Saturday night.If fans of either program were looking for calming reassurances or even signs of true hope, Jack Trice Stadium wasn't exactly the place to be.Lost ...

Something’s gotta give

Conventional wisdom has pegged Saturday's ''Big Game'' to be anything but big and not much of a game.After last year's result and this season's start, Iowa and Iowa State critics alike are expecting a snoozer, a clunker, a pillow fight - a meaningless matchup of also-rans. Their disheartened ...

Comfort zone

The state softball tournament arrived on Fort Dodge's doorstep 43 years ago as a one-class, eight-team event.Now well into its fifth decade of service, Harlan and Hazel Rogers Sports Complex will host five classes and 40 programs this week as the caravan comes to town beginning Monday.At some ...

Picture perfect

Babe Ruth at Twin Lakes. The White Sox and Cubs christening the Dodger Stadium baseball field. Frank Gotch. Dick Tighe. Duane Twait. Dallas Clark. Lisa Koll.When it comes to the history of sports in our area, the stories are legendary - the figures and venues, iconic.We are now in the stretch ...

Action at the Am

Fort Dodge Senior High graduate Colin Pearson became just the third player in Fort Dodge Amateur history to limbo the 200 barrier for the 54-hole event this past weekend.Pearson's 14-under par total of 199 tied the mark first established by Eagle Grove's Jason Knutzon in 1998, then matched by ...

Full circle

Judd Gibb is a five-time PGA Iowa Section player of the year, a two-time teacher of the year, the state's top instructor in 2012 according to Golf Digest, a former assistant at Iowa State and the Des Moines Golf and Country Club, an ex-PGA teaching pro at The Legacy and Sugar Creek, and an ...

A promising future

Fort Dodge Senior High has added a few bells and whistles to its annual golf outing, which will be June 14 at the Country Club.Iowa wrestling legend Dan Gable is slated to be a guest speaker at the event, and Dallas Clark has verbally committed to attend as long as an NFL team doesn't change ...

Trim the fat

Major League Baseball has an obesity problem.A sport that prides itself on success through simplicity - hard work, execution, chemistry - is being swallowed whole by indulgent owners, spoiled players and gluttonous contracts.A list of the game's highest paid athletes for 2013 reads like a ...

Deja vu for ISU

Before Aaron Craft, there was Bruce Schnabel.And before Georges Niang, there was Tom Goodman.As Craft launched his last-second jump shot to stick a dagger in Iowa State's NCAA Tournament hopes on Sunday, a familiar, helpless feeling came racing back to Goodman - a former Fort Dodge Dodger and ...

Deja vu for ISU

Before Aaron Craft, there was Bruce Schnabel.And before Georges Niang, there was Tom Goodman.As Craft launched his last-second jump shot to stick a dagger in Iowa State's NCAA Tournament hopes on Sunday, a familiar, helpless feeling came racing back to Goodman - a former Fort Dodge Dodger and ...

Outside looking in

Back before pre-NCAA Tournament talk was fixated on RPI, BPI, Bracketology and tracking Joe Lunardi's every tweet, a relatively simple checklist almost always determined a team's fate for the Big Dance.If a Big Ten team won at least 20 regular-season games and finished .500 or better in the Big ...

Time of reflection

DES MOINES - It's easy - almost natural - for Newell-Fonda fans to look back after Friday's championship loss and think about what could have been, or look forward and start to wonder what might be.Mustang girls basketball coach Dick Jungers just wants to appreciate the present for a ...