Nov 30, 2009

New Moon? Nah, new season...

It's been a boring couple weeks since fall sports ended, but this week comes the opening of winter sports so I spent a few days over the last couple days shooting practices for previews. Things get going in a big way on Friday as IHS-NHS face off in a doubleheader, with the boys game first, followed by the girls. All four teams should be pretty good this year, which will hopefully lead to some good pix. I haven't been super psyched about my sports stuff thus far this year, so maybe some hoops and wrestling can turn that streak around? So far so, well, pretty good. I really like this first pic from Naselle boys practice.
This one I dragged the shutter quite a bit, and though the coach pops through like I wanted they guys must've stopped moving at that 15th of a second enough to not be very blurry, which is too bad.
Over at Ilwaco the coach was running them pretty hard, trying to build up endurance. Here they are after finishing up a long running drill. For whatever reason I didn't get very good stuff from the girls practices I went to, but Friday is only a few days away...

Hope everyone had a great holiday last week, and with that here's a few shout-outs:
Thanks to the Marcus family for having us for T-Day, it was a blast!
Thanks to everybody out there who takes the time to check out this blog. I know I can be slow on the uptake on here, but thanks for hanging in there. ON a related note, thanks to everybody who takes the time to give feedback out in the community, it may not seem like a lot but it really drives me to keep trying to be better at what I do and it is much appreciated!
Thanks to my Ness, Kenz and Wyse for being the reason I can't wait to come home and am bummed when I'm away (in a good way).

Alright, enough warm and fuzzies, cheers, 

Nov 17, 2009

A bitter end in the bitter cold

Friday night was the end of the football season for the Naselle Comets and for me. It was certainly an unexpected end for both. We have covered this team pretty heavily the last four years as they rose from a perennial under-.500 team, to one of the best in the state. There's a small sense of finality for me, as many of the kids I've been shooting for that time are now all done. Next years team will likely be great again, as they have some very good players returning and the coaching staff is a caring and professional group, but for me, in some ways it won't be the same. I can honestly say that I've had the pleasure to befriend on some level several of the players and it really made it a joy to go to their games and document their successes, and lesser so their defeats. Here are a couple pix I liked from the night, you can see a gallery from the game HERE
As the game entered the fourth quarter and it became more and more evident that it would not be the Comets night I had to shift my focus away from the normal action and look for pix of how the players react to the impending loss — truly one of my least favorite things I have to do. Following the game this scene happened in front of me, and while sad I think it speaks to the level of family and community of this team.

I got this one prior to the start of the game, as they chose to have their final pre-game meeting on the field since their locker room was located a couple hundred yards from the field. They brought it in tight so they could all hear the coaches, though I personally think it may have been to conserve body heat, as it was the coldest game I've shot in a couple years — I actually ran into the Burkhalter family at Safeway following the game and we agreed that the similarities between Friday's game and the second round playoff loss to Life Christian in 2007 were many, including: freeeeeezing cold, Christian private school, no offense for Naselle, night game in Tacoma, two weeks before Turkey day (I actually remember that part because just a couple hours after returning home we were off to California for an early Thanksgiving with my folks).

I don't think anyone would deny that Alan Erickson has been the emotional leader of this team. Once again at halftime he tried to rally the troops one more time. And while they marched down the field to score on their first possession in the second half, that's all they could muster. A couple days after the game Alan wrote a particularly touching farewell to his teammates, which you can read HERE if you like. Alan and the Burkhalter boys were the first to take on player blogging for Friday Night Sights, and have written consistently, win or lose, the last three seasons (the Longview Daily News even wrote about it last year). I don't know who will carry on that torch now, but I hope someone does as it really has added a further level of depth and understanding of the game on the blog.

So, goodbye football once again (believe it or not, hoops practice begins today at  both schools), we'll miss you — well maybe not the rain, cold and late Friday nights...) Hoops is on the horizon and I've been trying to think up some new approaches to shooting it — hopefully in a way where a Raymond parent won't want to get in a fight again after a game...


Nov 7, 2009

'Nother week, another slew of pix

This was originally destined to be like three different posts, but somehow its next Tuesday already...

Halloween night we went trick or treating with our friends the Trudell's. Their son Tristan went as Ben Franklin, complete with the "skullett" hair piece. We met some interesting people along the way.

Wyse went as a dinosuar (he loves dinos right now), while his sissy went as Pebbles, though I don't know if she's ever actually seen the Flintstones, but loves the cereal). Ness made both the costumes, which was pretty cool.

On Thursday I was driving around looking for a weather pix, and instead shot my first buck ... with my camera of course. This six-pointer was hanging out down by Waikiki Beach and was nice enough to hold still for awhile so I could get a few frames. The autumn color helps, though I wish I could've gotten closer.

Later that night I drove to Westport, the home of Ocosta High School to shoot Naselle's final regular season game, where they clinched their third straight playoff berth. At halftime I saw something unusual, as some of the guys washed off the mud that was caked on them. As I told Austin, first time I'd seen guys take a shower at halftime. You can see a gallery of pix from the game HERE if you like. Naselle plays Tacoma Baptist in a first round game this Friday night in Tacoma, course I'll be there. You can check out our week-long coverage of the game at the Friday Night Sights Blog.

Friday afternoon I was up in South Bend again as once again Brian Brush was in court. The main reason for me going was because he has apparently been on a hunger strike and was noticeably thinner.
While taking the pic above his lawyer decided to block my view with his folders, which actually made for a pretty good pic IMO.

Saturday afternoon I shot pix at the North Head Lighthouse again. This is for another story about its deterioration, this time about a non-profit group trying to save it. Thankfully the lighthouse was open to visitors so I could get some interior pix. Last time out I got stuff of the crumbling exterior, which you can see HERE if you like.

I must've had a thing for pix through doors and windows Saturday, as I made it out to Knappton Cove for a quick pic from the L&C event they had going on there.

As I returned to town and was stopping for a peppermint mocha my wife called and said they were down at the beach and I should come check it out. After picking her up a pumpkin spice chai and headed down I found a virtual winter wonderland — only it wasn't snow, it was thick sea foam that was created by the remnants of last months algae bloom and the rough weather and washed ashore by an extremely high tide. A few clammers were checking it out but most stuck to their cars as wind and sneaker waves blew it all over the place.