Western Nebraska Observer - Observations all along the line - Kimball & the Southern Panhandle First

Jock Talk


The 2016 Western Trails Conference Track Meet is in the books and Kimball did a good job of hosting this year.

A salute to the conference officials for moving it up to this past Thursday from the scheduled Saturday to avoid the winter storm that did occur.

Mitchell is really loaded this year with track talent, both girls and boys and they once again defended their team titles. Bayard and Bridgeport, and all of the schools involved, have some excellent talent. Three meet records were set, a couple of them wind aided, but they were by athletes who are ranked high in the state rankings in their events so they were not flukes.

If you track fans missed the meet, you need to try and get up to The Best of the West in Scottsbluff on April 26. Bayard’s Jessi Smith and Mitchell’s Jori Peters and Celeste Cardona are truly outstanding girls. Mitchell’s Drew Gilliland and Chase Watson are two outstanding boys and they shared this honor at the WTC meet. Kimball’s Trent Rutledge and Jaden Withow are also in this group. The Best of the West begins at 4 p.m. at Bearcat Stadium.


Mitchell’s Chase Watson won four gold medals at the WTC meet and what a day for him! He won the 800, 1600, 3200 and ran a leg on the winning 4 x 400 relay. That’s just one quarter of a mile shy of 4 miles! I think back to my own track days graduating in the great year of 1953 when the state didn’t even have the 3200 (2 mile) race and would allow a competitor to run only one race longer than the 440 (quarter mile). The belief was that any more than this could be dangerous to a young athlete. I was allowed to anchor the mile relay and run the open mile. Of course there was no cross country either. Now look at today. Chase Watson was just getting warmed up.


Don’t forget the Kimball Junior High Track Invite on tap today (Thursday) at the Kimball track site. Scheduled for a 9 a.m. start time.

A change in the schedule for the Kimball High track team as the George Calvert Meet scheduled for Mitchell tomorrow (Friday) has now been moved to the Morrill site and moved back a day to Saturday with a 9 a.m. start.

There was also a change in the Kimball High golf with the Morrill Tournament scheduled for this past Tuesday called off, but Kimball went instead to Chase County on Tuesday. They will be at Scottsbluff on Monday (April 25) for a 9 a.m. start time.


I had a telephone conversation with Mike Daum this week. I wanted to know his feelings on his South Dakota State’s coach Scott Nagy leaving to take a position at Wright University?

Mike said he was devastated at first when he heard coach Nagy and some assistant coaches were leaving, but everything is cool now. Mike said the new coach appeals to him and he is certainly going to stay with the Jackrabbitts. He did have some calls and some offers from some other Division One schools to jump ship and come to their houses, but Mike said better not to even mention where.


By the way, the latest honors for Mike for his outstanding season with South Dakota State is being named to the Kyle Macy Freshman All America Team. He has also been mentioned in the Top 25 Players returning next year and ESPN has singled him out as one of next year’s top players to keep an eye on.

As mentioned in an earlier article, Mike played the final eight or nine games with a fracture in his foot. He is still in rehab, wearing a boot, and has two more weeks on non-weight bearing activity but thinks he will be ready to get after it again by the end of June.


The Thursday Night Kimball Men’s Golf League is beginning to form their teams and organize this season’s schedule. They have already had 32 commitments from teams which will make this season one of the largest leagues in years. There is a meeting scheduled for May 5 around 7 p.m., where players will be able to meet new players and discuss a few rule changes that have been proposed.

The association will begin play with a combined scramble with the Four Winds Men’s League on May 15 starting at 1 p.m. They will have two weeks of pre-season scrambles beginning at 5 p.m. each evening on May 19 and 26 with the league to begin on June 2nd. Each week play will be a system scoring both match and stroke play for nine holes. All teams make the season ending tournament and are seeded by their point totals throughout the summer. For additional information please contact the Pro Shop and they will put you in contact with the league officials.


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