What a Difference a Year Makes for the Winter Sports Season
Yesterday high school hoop coaches on the New York side of the Border Country Region rolled out the basketballs for the first time this season to begin practice, and it got me thinking, what a difference a year makes.
Last year at this time our local New York Schools had not particpated in sports at all and everyone was speculating about what would happen next. Meanwhile, Vermont schools had just finished off a successful, although shortened fall sports season, but the status of indoor winter sports was still unclear.
This year, at this point anyway, it is all systems go for winter sports on both sides of the border. Sure, because the games and matches are played inside there will be some protocoals in place, but that is just something we are having to learn to live with. The important thing is that the kids will be able to play and get thjngs back to normal as much as possible. That is what is important. Physically and mentally our student-athletes need this. I look forward to the return of league tournament and sectional playoff games. For me,along with the March Madness of the NCAA Tournament, it is the best time of year.
This year things are also going to be more back to business as usual for me, and I can't wait for the hustle and bustle to begin. I haven't been in a high school gym covering high school basketball in nearly two years. Last year I sat home in my recliner watching all of the action on my computer screen. I usually had multiple windows open watching several games at a time. If all goes as planned there will rarely be a night where I will be home sitting in that chair this winter.
For high school sports I am excited that I will be calling the play by play of Granville Golden Horde winter sports on the NFHS Network. Granville Athletic Director Justin Nassivera and I have been talking about this for awhile and I am glad that it was able to come together. Of course I will also still be covering games for the Granville Sentinel, and Whitehall Times for the Golden Horde, Whitehall Railroaders and Harford Tanagers. Any night I am not calling a Granville game I will be in either the Whitehall or Hartford gyms.
On Saturdays, and occassional other nights when it fits my schedule I will be making the 1.5 hour drive to Williamstown, Massachusetts to call the play by play of Williams College men's and women's hockey on the Northeast Sports Network. Again, it has been two years since I climbed the ladder (literally) to the broadcast location high above the Lansing-Chapman Rink to bring Eph's fans around the country, maybe even the world, the excitement of NECAC Hockey.
Two years ago when Lakes Region Radio was sold and Covid-19 was starting to rear its ugly head I began to wonder if I would ever broadcast a high school or college game again. I had been doing games for Lakes Region Radio for over 30 years and NSN since 2014. Suddenly it all came to an abrupt halt. Now my dance card is so full it would be impossible to squeeze any more work in.
Yes indeed, what a difference a year makes!
With the Border Country Sports Blog, I'm Keith Harrington.