And, Now, Still More Examples of 'Covering News On the Cheap'
A reader e-mailed me this morning with another chapter of "How the Local Paper Covers the News On the Cheap."
Here's his message:
"There was a picture from the National Balloon Classic on the front page of the Register today. The cutlines told where the event was held and added, 'For more information on the event go to www.nationalballoonclassiccom or call (515) 961-8415.'
"That was the extent of the coverage.
"The Register did finally break down and send a reporter to Fort Dodge for a second-day story about a mother killing her two small children and herself. Although at least two Des Moines television stations had crews there for first-day coverage, the Register waited a day."
[RON MALY'S COMMENTS: Ho-hum. Some things never change. The penny-pinchers at Big Daddy parent company Gannett are happy, but you can bet nobody else is--certainly not Jerry Perkins, Dawn Sagario and the summer interns in the newsroom].
LET'S MOVE TO SOMETHING MUCH MORE PLEASANT
Nice going, Valley Tigers. You're some kind of baseball juggernaut.
MAHON ASKS, 'WHAT ARE THE ODDS?'
A note from Mike Mahon at Drake:
WHAT ARE THE ODDS THAT THREE MEMBERS OF THE DRAKE GOLF TEAM WOULD WIN PRESTIGIOUS TITLES ACROSS THE COUNTRY WITHIN THE LAST WEEK...
AND THEN TO TOP IT OFF, DRAKE GOLF ALUMN ZACH JOHNSON WOULD TIE WITH TIGER WOODS FOR SECOND PLACE AT THE BUCK OPEN SUNDAY, FINISHING FOUR STROKES BEHIND WINNER V.J. SINGH.
CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING.....
EARLIER IN THE WEEK, DRAKE SENIOR-TO-BE KANE HANSON, WHO WAS REDSHIRTED IN 2004-05, QUALIFIED FOR THE U.S. AMATEUR BY WINNING A SECTIONAL TOURNAMENT IN FARGO, N.D.
ON FRIDAY DRAKE JUNIOR-TO-BE KETH MALONE WON THE NEBRASKA STATE STROKE PLAY TITLE
TODAY, DRAKE SENIOR-TO-BE JEFF BERKSHIRE WON THE 81ST ARIZONA AMATEUR
DRAKE'S BERKSHIRT WINS ARIZONA AMATEUR
PHOENIX, ARIZ. - Jeff Berkshire, who will be a senior on the Drake men's golf team, sank a six-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole to post a 1 up victory over Brian Prouty en route to winning the 81st Arizona Amateur Sunday at Southern Dunes Golf Club.
"Words can't explain how I feel," said Berkshire, who finished third in the 2005 Missouri Valley Conference Championships. "This is the state's most prestigious amateur tournament and to win it is just great.
"Last year, he [Brian] beat me in the second round and I had to get back at him. We both played great, I made a lot of putts and I have to credit that for the win."
The two battled all day, with five lead changes and neither able to sustain a 1 up lead for more than two holes.
"I'd rather go down being beaten than losing the match," said Prouty who attends the University of Arizona. "I wasn't going to make it too easy for him. I played 16 or 17 great holes, but missing that short par putt on 12 and leaving my tee shot in the bunker on the [par 3] 17th really hurt me."
The 468-yard par 4 12th hole was the turning point of the match. Berkshire just missed a 15-footer for birdie to even the match, but the result didn't matter with Prouty missing his short par putt.
Heading to the short par four 14th hole, Berkshire, aided a bit by a slight breeze at his back, drove the green with the balling stopping just three feet to the left of the pin converting for an eagle two. Prouty, who was in the right greenside bunker chipped out and watched as it rolled five feet past the hole.
Prouty evened the match on the par 5 16th hole getting up and down from the right greenside bunker for a birdie. His tee shot on 17, came up short, landing in the bunker and proved to be a difficult up and down.
Meanwhile, Berkshire's ball was safely on the green, some 21 feet below the hole and he was able to save par and regain the lead to go 1 up. Both players had 300-plus yard drives on the 463-yard par 4 18th hole. Berkshire stuffed his 160-yard approach shot just seven feet to the left of the flagstick. Prouty answered with a 140-yard shot that ended up about 13 feet past the hole.
With the match on the line, Prouty found the bottom of the cup and Berkshire needed to hole out for the victory. With his calm demeanor and steady play, he nailed the putt without any hesitation to claim the championship.
"I usually hit my long irons really well," he said. "My putting put me over the top."
Clearly recognizing he was beat by the better player at least on this day, Prouty was gracious in defeat. "He played flawless today. He was the better player today and that is all there was too it."
BAKER'S EXIT FROM CUBS CAN'T COME TOO SOON
This is a day when Chicago Cubs fans can feel they've died and gone to heaven.
The Los Angeles Times is reporting that a "person close to" Cubs manager Dusty Baker said he wants to manage the Los Angeles Dodgers if Jim Tracy doesn't return in 2006. The paper said Baker "desperately wants to manage the Dodgers."
More times than not, the "person close to" someone [in this case Baker] is usually the man himself. So I figure Baker is campaigning to get the Dodgers job, and I hope he gets it. Hell, there's no reason for him to wait until next season to put on his Dodgers uniform. Put him on the next plane to L.A. today. And send bench coach Dick Pole--the guy who looks like he hasn't moved a muscle for three weeks and seems asleep every day--along with him.
Baker is wearing thin with all Cubs fans. He's certainly wearing thin with me. And there's no doubt that the Cubs would let him out of the final year of his contract. It's not like he's been coming across as a smart guy either inside or outside the dugout. Ask the guy what a squeeze play is and he thinks it's a terminal illness.
IOWA RECRUIT WINS ONTARIO GOLF TITLE
A junior golfer from the hamlet of Lowbanks -- a whistle-stop on the shores of Lake Erie between Port Colborne and Dunnville -- is the Ontario champion.
Matt Graham, unranked by the Golf Association of Ontario, charged from five shots back to win the 72-hole championship at the St. Thomas Golf and Country Club in Union.
London Free Press reported on "Slam! Sports" that Graham, 18, fired a final-round of 71 to finish at 2-over-par 290.
"I realized I was in contention when I birdied the ninth hole,'' said Graham, who graduated from high school in Fonthill last June and is headed to Iowa on a golf scholarship. "I took the lead on the 14th hole when I went for it (the green on the par-five) in two and then two-putted for a birdie.''