Stories by Tom
News Tribune Sports Commentary
I’m not going to go through a total rehash of all of the events of the last seven days. But there are a few things I want to address.
It’s going to be a Martin family reunion at Southern Illinois University.
It felt just like home for Alexis Roberson. Roberson, a senior at Jefferson City High School, was undecided about where she wanted to attend college. So about a month ago, the track and field standout decided to visit Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, Ill.
Helias teammates Kayla Yanskey and Elliot Knernschield did what they expected Saturday in the Class 3 state cross country championships at the Oak Hills Golf Center.
The Helias Lady Crusaders are looking to climb the ladder. Last year, the Lady Crusaders finished third in the Class 3 state cross country championships. Even though there aren’t many rungs left to climb, the opportunity is there today at the Oak Hills Golf Center.
The Helias Crusaders wanted to get off to a fast start Friday night. Or at least quicker than they did the first time they played the Hannibal Pirates this season, when they fell behind 35-0 at the half.
The Hannibal Pirates scored the first four times they had the football Friday night in a 35-14 win against the Helias Crusaders.
The first time Helias played at Hannibal this season, the Crusaders got off to a good start.
Helias dominated on both sides of the football Saturday and rolled to a 45-0 win against the Wentzville Liberty Eagles at Adkins Stadium.
It’s time to put the battles of the regular season to good use.
The Helias Lady Crusaders enter the Class 3 softball Final Four with nine losses, the most of any of the four teams. But you don’t get anything for a great record, everybody’s 0-0.
The final score might look like it was a bit of a laugher.
News Tribune Sports Commentary
A great time to be a Royals fan! Surely they don’t have a care in the world? If you believe that, you don’t know the Internet, the bastion of false outrage and nonsensical action.
Advances to Class 3 softball final four
The Helias Lady Crusaders kept the line going Saturday. And now the line is on its way to the Class 3 softball Final Four.
There might have been no group more frustrated at halftime Friday night than the offensive line of the Helias Crusaders.
The final US Airways flight has landed in Philadelphia, completing the last leg of its roundtrip journey.
The defenses ruled in the first half Friday night. It was going to come down to making the right adjustments in the final two quarters. And making a big play or two.
The Jefferson City Jays and Southern Boone Eagles both played one good half and one bad half Thursday night.
The district playoffs don’t start for another week.
The strategy worked even better than hoped. The Jefferson City Jays switched things up offensively at the start of Tuesday night’s action against the Rock Bridge Bruins at the 179 Soccer Park, beginning the game by starting their forwards out near the the opposing wide backs.
Don’t be surprised if the top teams at the Class 1 girls state golf tournament look a lot like last year. The Helias Lady Crusaders were among that group in 2014, taking fourth. They are looking to climb the ladder this year as the tournament starts today at Twin Hills Country Club in Joplin.
After a sluggish first half Saturday afternoon, it was time for a shakeup of the lineup for the Jefferson City Jays.
In loss to Rockhurst
They can’t score if they don’t have the ball. That was the strategy Friday night for the Helias Crusaders as they took on the Rockhurst Hawklets. And for the most part, it worked.
The Helias Crusaders battled to the end. Helias stayed with Rockhurst for four quarters Friday night before falling 35-25 to the Hawklets.
Heading into the season, Tim Rulo pointed to this week.
As crosstown showdowns go, it had the feel of a regular Monday night game.
The Helias Crusaders totaled 10 points on their first two drives Saturday afternoon and made them stand up for a 10-7 victory against the Rock Bridge Bruins at Adkins Stadium.
Great pitching, solid defense and timely hitting — the Fatima Lady Comets had those things covered.
It’s uncertain times for the Helias Crusaders and Rock Bridge Bruins.
The Jefferson City Jays and Battle Spartans played the full 80 minutes Tuesday night at the 179 Soccer Park.
Maybe the Rock Bridge Bruins got some inspiration from its junior varsity.
Leading 28-24 as time wound down Saturday night at Adkins Stadium, St. James Academy was facing a third-and-5 at the Helias 29.
The little things could add up to something big Saturday night.
When the Helias Lady Crusaders needed their focus, they found it.
Our work gets recognized by Missouri Press Association
Last Saturday, the News Tribune won several Missouri Press Association awards in a ceremony in Columbia. The sports department received three of them and I wanted to make mention of it.
“The outcome of the game did not come down to that play, there were a lot of things we could have done better,” Helias coach Tim Rulo said after the Crusaders dropped a 28-27 decision Friday night to the Battle Spartans.
The final nine minutes of fourth quarter were a roller-coaster ride. Unfortunately, the ride ended a few yards short for the Helias Crusaders. The Crusaders were stopped on the final play of Friday night’s game against Battle, falling 28-27 to the Spartans.
The Helias Crusaders came back to work.
For the first three innings, the Helias Lady Crusaders got runners in scoring position. They just couldn’t complete the scoring part. But good things can come to those who wait, as the Lady Crusaders broke through with four runs in the fourth Monday night on their way to a 7-5 victory against the North Callaway Lady Thunderbirds at Duensing Field.
Excitement or relief? “Excitement, we got the chip off our shoulder,” Helias senior wide receiver/linebacker Adam Bax said Saturday night after the Crusaders picked up their first win of the season with a 39-6 decision against the Hickman Kewpies at Adkins Stadium.
The Jefferson City Jays have had a couple of measuring-stick games to start the soccer season.
It isn’t the start to the season the Helias Crusaders wanted.
The Helias Crusaders thought they were ready.
With five runners returning on each of the state-qualifying boys and girls teams, optimism is high for cross country this season at Helias.
Bishop Althoff racked up more than 700 yards of offense Friday night in rolling to a 54-38 victory against Helias in a battle of Crusaders at Adkins Stadium. Althoff ran for 347 yards, while throwing for another 366 to improve to 2-0 on the season. Helias falls to 0-3.
It was something to build on.
It’s something that was still on the to-do list. The Jefferson City Jays and Hickman Kewpies were tied at 1 after regulation Tuesday night at the 179 Soccer Park. They were still tied after the two 10-minute overtime periods, meaning the contest was going to be decided in penalty kicks.
There were more important things than the score Tuesday night for the Helias Crusaders. Matthew Schulte’s goal in the final minute of the first half gave Helias a 2-1 lead at intermission against the Moberly Spartans at the 179 Soccer Park.
Down 35-0 at the half Friday night, the final result was all but decided. The Helias Crusaders didn’t want anything remotely similar to occur in the final two quarters.
HANNIBAL — Except for the final score, it was all but decided at halftime.