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Wild Bill’s Sports Roundup

Bill TurnerI’ve had it with all this rain.

Those beautiful February snows helped my demeanor and offered plenty of time to reflect.

I payed little attention to all those snow-haters and took the basketball break in stride. Then the temperatures rose and the skies opened.

“If people were rain, I’d be a drizzle and The Chief would be a hurricane.”

That quote, taken loosely from John Green in ‘Looking for Alaska’, sums up things here at corporate headquarters.

The Chief wants sports coverage, but fields are under water. I may need to buy waders because it’s getting deep around here. (Just kidding, Chief)

I even worked up a scheme to cover the state basketball finals in Richmond, complete with an overnight at The Hilton and their mimosa buffet breakfast on The Chief’s nickel. That one was washed out as well when no “Big-11” teams advanced to the finals.

Yes, “When it rains, it pours.”

That quote goes back to 1911 and The Morton Salt Company, which had begun adding magnesium carbonate to salt to keep it from clumping in rainy weather. You always learn something when you read this column.

Now, to keep The Chief amused, clumpy salt or not, let’s just get to sports.

Congratulations go out to a pair of “Big-11” teams that advanced to the VHSL state semifinals at Virginia Commonwealth University before falling against outstanding opponents.

Northside reached the boys 3A Final-4 before dropping their semifinal, 78-57, to eventual state champion George Wythe-Ricmond on Tuesday. A great season for Billy Pope’s Vikings who should be strong next season after losing only one player to graduation.

High-fives also go out to the William Fleming girls, whose valiant second half comeback came up just short in their 58-57 loss to the Monacan Chiefs. Champ Hubbard’s Lady Colonels fought to the finish in nearly completing the miraculous comeback from a late 10-point deficit.

Last call for Monday night’s (March 16th) Roanoke Valley Sports Club meeting with guest speaker and veteran college basketball official Roger Ayers. Contact Maggie Drewry at 540-353-1103 for information and to purchase tickets.

Once we get a little dry air in the forecast, The Star sports team will once again bring you the best in spring sports coverage from baseball and softball to girls and boys soccer and tennis. Watch for your favorite team in the upcoming weeks.

Off to the mail bag where one reader wants particulars about the game in last week’s column where both teams tried to lose on purpose.

Dear Wild Bill: I’m confused on both those Tennessee high school teams trying to fix their game and lose on purpose. Isn’t the losing team’s season over after a tournament loss? (Barry/ Roanoke)

Not necessarily, Barry. Even in the VHSL, at certain levels of tournament play, both the winner and loser of a game can advance. In the Tennessee case, the loser got the easier opponent in the next round, so the wheels started turning.

Until next week, get your wheels turning and send those questions to [email protected]

Bill Turner

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