Back in the day, I was an average soccer player on one of Nevada’s all-time great high school teams. When the coach would ask me to enter the game, I’d race across the field to my position, eager to contribute in what turned out to be a storied season. On Saturday, I wasn’t so eager.
Desert Oasis High had just 11 varsity baseball players interested in joining its American Legion team this summer, so coach Paul Buboltz reached out to friends at Sierra Vista High with an idea: Let’s combine forces and form one team, the Las Vegas Aces.
I couldn’t believe my eyes. There had to be a mistake. A poster hung in the sports book at this local casino congratulating the winner of its NFL pick ’em contest, in which patrons paid $25 to select games each week of the regular season with no point spread. Winners could pocket up to $30,000 each week, or six figures for the overall winner at the end of the year. The champ wasn’t someone I expected — it was an elderly woman, someone who is usually stationed at the penny slot machines at the casino, not a handicapping specialist cashing ...
Don’t judge all soccer fans by what happened last week at Sam Boyd Stadium. And not just fans in Las Vegas — worldwide. Most attend games to cheer for their team. They aren’t looking to start a fight and have enough respect for the sport that they don’t storm onto the field. They wave flags, chant songs and blow horns. Their support doesn’t include stomping on an opposing fan's head.
I would have never written this last night: The group of fans responsible for a pregame and postgame fights that sent at least 10 to the hospital and forced the game to end prematurely, aren’t a good indication of the Hispanic soccer community in Las Vegas.
They chanted the entire game, straddling the line between confident and cocky with the assumption their soccer team was better than mine. They drank beer after beer, becoming more loud as the game wore on. It was only a matter of time before their passion would be rewarded with a goal. Then, Landon Donovan silenced the crowd.
It doesn’t make sense that Jim Livengood’s successful three-and-a-half-year run at the helm of the UNLV Athletic Department is suddenly ending. Instead of celebrating the man who nearly tripled the department’s fundraising efforts, a spur-of-the-moment news conference is held in his office to address his retirement. Strange, right?
There is more to high school sports than just winning. It’s about learning to become a reliable teammate, developing lifelong friendships, staying productive and playing for the name on the front of the jersey — that school you grew up following and hoping to one day compete for in a varsity sport. But winning sure makes the experience more memorable. That’s something players on the Chaparral High baseball team can attest to after their Division I-A playoff game Monday.
About 20 students at Clifford O. "Pete" Findlay Middle School were peeking through the windows of the school’s theater Wednesday afternoon hoping to get a glimpse of Anthony Marshall. For children of the North Las Vegas school, the former UNLV basketball guard is a rock star and someone whose path in life they strive to duplicate.
Nigel Williams-Goss, the first four-year player in Findlay Prep basketball history, certainly made his mark on the powerhouse program. The point guard was a McDonald’s All-American this past season and helped Findlay win a pair of ESPN National High School Invitational championships. He contacted the Sun asking if we’d publish a farewell column. He said he couldn’t leave Southern Nevada for the University of Washington without thanking the community. I couldn’t think of someone better to take over my column space. Here’s Nigel in his own words:
This doesn’t validate Jerry Tarkanian’s career. He’d already taken care of that, because his contributions to the game have long spoken for themselves. Sure, having the title Hall of Famer before a coach’s name is an extraordinary honor and one some strive for as the crowning achievement of their contributions to sport. Tarkanian was officially announced Monday for induction for Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame in September.