Monday, June 13, 2011
Austin Bound, Quick Turnaround...
The Albany Lady Lions' first trip to the state softball tournament started with a 11am game in Austin. After having spent 10 days in Austin just a couple of weeks ago, I wanted to spend as much time in my own bed as I could. So, we ended up leaving at 4:30am for the game. That sounded crazy enough, but this one may top it... if Albany won, we spend the night and cover the championship game on Saturday, that's normal enough. However, should they lose, we were going to turn around and be back home that night. Well... they lost.
The really cool thing about state championship games are the venues. The University of Texas has really great facilities all around and the McCombs Softball Complex is no different. It's a beautiful stadium. And, when I;m covering a game here I try to make sure to shoot some photos that kind of show where they are playing. Win or lose this is a big deal. A couple hundred teams start the year with the goal of making it to Austin, and only four from each classification make it. So, in getting to not only shoot for print but having an online slideshow with an unlimited amount of space I try to show everything happening from warmups, to the game, the fans and the post-game celebration/disappointments.
The game started out kind of ugly. Grapeland was hitting well and Albany was making uncharacteristic errors, both fielding and mental on the base paths. I'd chalk it up to nerves. The did end up calming down and playing better. The problem was, when they did start hitting the ball they couldn't string enough together to score. Or, they were hitting the ball well but to the wrong place and were getting out. It's one of those things, that it just wasn't going to be their day. They ended up losing the game 8-3, which meant that my day had just gotten longer. After filing my photos, putting together a slideshow and grabbing some dinner we were headed home. Luckily the reporter drove the way back and I was able to use my wireless card to get online (with a very slow connection at some points) and build the slideshow. So, by 9pm I was home and back in my own bed and ready to cover baseball the next day.