Published Every Tuesday

For two decades I knew this time was coming, and I dreaded it 20 years ago, and I dread it even more today.

I’m going to hang up the ol’ camera and computer keyboard and head into retirement. There won’t be any CinemaScope screen of the hero riding off into the sunset as the screen fades to black... just a parting shot From the Sidelines, then a fun ride comes to an abrupt end.

As a teenager, I always felt what I did wasn’t going to hurt me... If I drove like a maniac, I wouldn’t get in an accident - no, not me! If I decided to jump off the high board at Pit One pool, I’d never do a belly-flop - no, not me! If I smoked cigarettes I’d never have any ill effects - no, not me! Well, I luckily never had an accident in my teen years, and didn’t belly-flop off the high board... well, maybe once or twice. However, the cigarette thing is another story all together. I’m now paying the price - and it ain’t fun. I can’t blame anyone but myself for the stupidity of taking up that nasty habit, and I’m not looking for any sympathy for these consequences. COPD is the penalty and I’ve accepted it.

Over the past year, it’s been more difficult each week to walk the sidelines with the trusty Nikon and Oxygen in tow, and so I’ve finally reached the conclusion that it’s time to hang ‘er up!

I’ve had a zillion jobs over the past 7-plus decades, always wondering what exactly I wanted to be when I grew up. Well, as of last week I’ve made up my mind... I wanna be a weekly sports guy in the Intermountain Area. Yep, I’ve spent the past two decades enjoying every second of this job... well, perhaps there was that time in Alturas at a football game in November that I might have had a distaste for the job as it took two weeks to get feeling back in my toes from frostbite... but that was a mere fleeting moment. I truly hope that all the young people I’ve reported on over these many years get to be as lucky as I have been in having a job they couldn’t wait to go to each day... I didn’t always have the love for many of my other ventures in the past.

I began this journalistic journey back in the 1960’s with the late Dennis Smith and the Intermountain News - then took a 30 year break before returning to begin the process all over again here at Mountain Echo. I cannot say enough good things about Walt and Donna Caldwell, who never once asked me to ‘Tone it down,” or “scrap that part.” Sometimes I even had a feeling they never read anything I submitted... but knew that wasn’t true. The young student/ athletes that I first reported on at Burney, Fall River and Big Valley school’s when starting here at Mountain Echo are now approaching their 40’s in age, and have kids that are playing sports.... today’s seniors weren’t even born when this term began - think about that and you’ll really feel old!

I will continue this sports job through the issue of September 4th, then it will all come to an end. So here’s the ‘Help Wanted’ advertisement... Anyone wanting to be the Mountain Echo Sports guy/gal should apply by calling (530) 336-6262. I didn’t give the bosses much notice, so I’m kinda hoping someone will step up to fill these shoes quickly.

In the meantime, I’ll continue to plug away with a couple of football games on tap the next few days, and if I’m lucky one or two photo’s will turn out in focus... and since It’s taken me two decades to get to this point - we’ll continue this conversation next week.

Return to Mt. Echo Home

Gridiron Season Kicks Off Friday
BURNEY - The Burney Raiders kick-off their 2018 football campaign at home here Friday night when they play host to the Etna Lions with JV action starting things off at 5:30pm.

As been the history of the Raiders the past few seasons, a small turnout for the two football teams, with the varsity sitting at 14 and JV’s at 13 in the final week before their first game.

The Raiders hosted Modoc and Quincy in a 3-team scrimmage Saturday, “and we saw some positive things with our varsity,” noted coach Jed Tate.

Tate has last year’s JV quarterback moving up to varsity in Connor Pfadt, while senior Gerardo Villarruel is back to lead the ground game along with junior Dwayne Smith. David Nelson and Travis Reed are a couple of wide receivers who will get Pfadt’s attention.

Senior Noah Cassell, is back to head up the Raider defense.

Burney finished third in the Mountain Valley League last year at 2-3 (3-7 overall) but faces a larger league with the addition of Fall River, Modoc and Etna to make it a nine team conference.

Burney will have a short week after the Etna game, going to Fall River the following Wednesday (August 29) for the Fair Bowl.

 Softball Wraps Up This Week

FALL RIVER MILLS - The Intermountain Co-Ed Softball League will wrap up their season this week, with the playoffs set for Thursday at the Lion’s Park here. The schedule of games will be announced at tonight’s (Tuesday) play.

Tonight (Tuesday) will be a make-up night of games lost due to the Hat Fire (see schedule below).

Last week’s results saw Team 501 remain unbeaten as they downed We’re Not Too Drunk (WNTD), 16- 6. WNTD rebounded with a 16-6 win over KROOR, while the Heavy Hitters downed the Forest Service, 11- 0.

The Fall River Real Estate squad picked up a pair of wins last week, defeating the Free Agents, 17-2 and blasting the Ridge Runners, 11-6.

See ya at the ball park.