The Norman Transcript

February 19, 2013

Sports worlds colliding


The Norman Transcript

NORMAN — Buckle up. It’s that time of year again.

When seasons, sports and worlds collide, among the high schools and those donned in crimson and cream, when there are few days of rest, for those trying to bring it to you and those of you trying to follow it all.

It’s a funny thing.

Everybody thinks we’re so busy around here for OU-Texas-at-the-Cotton Bowl week. Well, we are. But not like this.

So, with excitement, an alarm clock and maybe some NoDoz (or lots of coffee), welcome to The Craziest, Busiest, Most Relentless, Impossible To Keep Up With — though we try — Time of The Year.

The Norman North boys winning the Class 6A state swim crown was plenty impressive, yet only the opening act.

Friday and Saturday bring us 28 wrestlers from Norman High, Norman North, Moore, Westmoore, Southmoore, Noble and Little Axe descending upon State Fair Arena, where NHS has four grapplers in tow — Nigel Joliffie (106), Derek Ross (113), Colin Pasque (138) and Cael Stumpff (182) — to North’s three, though it’s the T-Wolves with a pair of just-crowned regional champions — Hayden Hansen (126) and Levi Berry (160) — leading the way.

Also, if you’re keeping score at home, it’s Noble and Southmoore leading area programs in pure numbers, each with five different grapplers headed to Oklahoma City.

Of course, before any of that happens, the Class 6A and 5A basketball playoffs begin, while the Class 2A, 3A and 4A playoffs continue. Of 22 area high school teams, 21 will be in action beginning Thursday.

Among the big schools, two get to play host.

The Norman North girls play host to Lawton, Midwest City and Norman High beginning at 6:30 p.m. Friday when the Tigers meet the Bombers.

The Southmoore girls will be visited by Putnam City West, Edmond Memorial and Yukon, the Bulldogs and Millers tipping things off at 6:30 Friday night.

Among the not-as-big schools, both Washington and Lexington are hosting. The action begins in the afternoon at both gyms Thursday, though the Bulldogs and Warriors, boys and girls, all in the winners’ bracket, won’t take the court until Thursday night.

In the midst of so much preps, Bedlam women’s basketball takes the court Saturday in Stillwater. The Baylor men are at Lloyd Noble Center the same day. And, if you haven’t noticed, college basketball’s postseason is around the corner.

The Big 12 women’s schedule concludes March 5, three days before the conference tournament begins in Dallas. And the last day of the Big 12 men’s regular season is March 9, four days before the conference tournament begins in Kansas City.

Yet the midblowing thing about the sports calendar is not that everything’s drawing toward a conclusion, but that a whole bunch of things are about to start up all over again.

Say you’re wondering if the Norman North boys can repeat as actual Class 6A state soccer champions and mythical national champions, each of which they claimed last season. Well, you’ll get to begin finding out March 1 — two weeks from today — when the season begins at Westmoore. And, if you’re a Tiger fan, you’ll have to wait until March 5, when Moore visits Gordon Drummond field. That, or go all the way to Bentonville (Ark.) High School where the girls open the season March 1, 2 and 3, playing a very rare Sunday game before driving home.

To say nothing of the prep baseball season, which begins March 4, when NHS travels to Lawton and North visits Putnam City West.

None of which includes the No. 1-in-the-nation OU softball team, which will eventually play some games at Marita Hynes Field, or the No. 15 OU baseball team, which meets Arkansas-Pine Bluff today and Wednesday and returns home March 1, 2 and 3 for three games with Pepperdine.

Catch your breath.

Try to keep up.

Clay Horning

Follow me @clayhorning

cfhorning@normantranscript.com

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