Experience leads to improvement

By: Jim Linsdau/Placer Herald Sports Editor
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School is just about out, which brings us to the point where we look back to see what we?ve done and where we can improve. Last year, I started just about the time Little League was wrapping up the Tournament of Champions and selecting its All Stars. Thanks to a lot of help from volunteers with both Rocklin and Tri-City we found out what it takes to keep up. Although the Herald had some preseason material on the Jr. Thunder and Jr. Wildcats, it didn?t go much beyond that. It?s an area that could stand improvement. High school sports opened in the fall and the Thunder and Wildcats hit the ground running ? literally. The cross-country teams from both schools had outstanding seasons. We covered a bit of Rocklin girls golf but Whitney was off the radar. However, water polo made a splash in the Herald and volleyball did get some attention. The Thunder volleyball program is solid and the Wildcats are headed that way. Thanks to some help, Rocklin girls tennis got some ink but Whitney coverage was sporadic at best. Football introduced me to the Quarry Bowl. I don?t think I?ve been to a college game that displayed as much spirit and support. Whitney won the rivalry and went on to have a terrific season. The Wildcats and Thunder appeared playoff bound in girls soccer but the leagues for both were very strong. The coverage there needs work. Boys and girls basketball had its ups and downs at both schools. The Wildcats? boys looked playoff bound early on but the Thunder girls struggled with close losses. In the end, Rocklin made the playoffs and Whitney did not. The Thunder boys get a new head coach in Casey Cutts. I used to watch him play so next season should be fun. Wrestling was left out. We have to do better next season. Spring brought some surprises. Rocklin?s baseball team also suffered close losses early in the season but made it into the section semifinals. Whitney?s softball team was also up to the task finishing second in sections to a powerful Bear River team. Rainouts and schedule changes dampened coverage plans but they were probably all wet to begin with. The swim teams for both schools are young but the programs are strong. Whitney boys tennis shows great promise and Rocklin put a big dent in the playoffs. Both clubs are destined to shine. Rocklin boys golf got a story or two, but Whitney was missed. A better system will have to be devised for them. Coach Mark Snow helped us keep up with his outstanding track and field unit and local Lloyd Jones kept us abreast of Rocklin?s athletes. We plan to do things differently next season to provide better community coverage. Sports are my field and I welcome all input whether good, bad or contrary. Community sports cannot be done without local help and I have gotten that in Rocklin but more is needed. Let me know your thoughts on newsprint and the Internet and what we can do to improve both. Please e-mail or call (916) 774-7943 and let us hear your side of the story.