Monday, September 19, 2011

A Win Would've Worked Better Here...

I'm often asked "who do you want to win" when I'm at games. And, my official position for my job makes me neutral. However, I'll often tell people "Why don't you ask me at halftime." I usually get a perplexed look and want to know what I mean. Well, this Friday's game between Wylie and Waco High was the perfect example of why I often say this.
I honestly don't care who win the game, yes, sometimes it's a lot easier to cover the winner rather than the loser but these pre-district games don't have a whole lot riding on them other than some bragging rights and pride. There isn't a lot of great emotion to it and relatively nothing riding on the game.
So, this week was the perfect example, of why I decide at halftime who I'd like to win. During the second quarter of Friday's game, Wylie came out and played lights out, both on offense and defense. There were a few nice long passes, some great defensive plays. And, even during the last couple of minutes of the second quarter it poured rain (very rare around here lately) which made for a few really nice shots and weather shots all together.
Basically, I had some really nice shots that I was happy with. However, just because I was happy with what I had, there was another half of football to be played. Then Waco High seemed to wake up and played lights out with some tough running plays and basically pushing Wylie all over the field. Something, that the eye test would've said should have happened the whole game. So, at the end of the game when I went to look at my photos, there just wasn't a whole lot that really told the story. Waco's game was really vanilla and kind of dull, no big plays, no big hits. They just did a workman like game and won. Oh well, these things happen, its a good thing it happened now rather than the playoffs. I still was happy with the photos I got, I just wish the outcome would've been different so they told the story a little better.





Thursday, September 15, 2011

Friday Night Football on a Saturday Afternoon...

The excitement and crowds for Friday Night Football around here are second to none, that's pretty much undeniable, however, the light could be better. So, where there is a Saturday afternoon game, it's a lot more fun. The only problem is, especially this time of year, the weather. The week before the weather had been great. Saturday though it was in the high 90's and the temperatures on the artificial turf field was even worse.
For the first half I toughed it out down on the field. It was damn hot, in fact the turn was so hot from the sun beating down on it it was burning my knees through my pants. How Fun! So, for the second half I decided to change things up. Since I can shoot from the field any game, I decided to go shoot most of the second half from the camera deck on the press box. This is only best done during the day since I need really long glass. Using a 2x convertor on the 400mm lens is best and can only be done during daylight. It made for a nice change from the norm, plus the shade and the breeze were nice too.








Monday, September 12, 2011

How Can a Game This Close be so Boring??...

Friday night was Cooper's home opener. It's been a pretty tough season so far for the Cougars, in the first game they gave up a 28 point lead in the second half to lose, and last week they got beaten pretty bad in Austin by Westlake. So, this week's game against San Angelo Central was supposed to be the one that righted the ship. Central was coming in with a 2-0 record, but that hadn't really played any tough teams yet either.
Cooper looked good scoring early with a nice touchdown pass. After that the offense seemed to stall. Central was moving the ball pretty well. The score stayed close the whole game, but the game just didn't seem that exciting. Everyone I talk to had pretty much the same feelings about the game... kinda boring. There were a few nice plays during the game by both teams, Central had a nice interception return for a touchdown, and Cooper had a few nice long pass plays. But, for the most part the game just seemed to drag by.
After Cooper kicked a field goal to go up 23-20 Central came down the field and was in field goal position with two seconds left. This is when things REALLY began to drag out. Both teams called a timeout, then another for Cooper, I guess trying to ice the kicker. This whole time I'm looking at the clock, it was late, this game took forever. Lots of incomplete passes, stopping the clock. Then Central lines up to kick, a 29-yard field goal, good. But... flag down, Central called for a false start, a 5-yard penalty and re-kick. Ugh, well, I guess this is good, no overtime... yet. Then Central calls timeout again. Teams line up, then a Cooper timeout, dear god! Can we just play the game already?!? Finally, after five timeouts, no one had any left, they could finally run the play. Central misses (good, there was no way I was making deadline if they went to overtime!), game over... finally!! I really do think it took 10-15 minutes to play the final 2 ticks of the clock!






Saturday, September 10, 2011

Look, In the Sky... It's Smoke...

Last Sunday morning I was leaving the grocery store with a few bags of ice and other frozen items for a party we were having that night. As I walked out of the grocery store there was a huge plume of black smoke in the sky. Damn, I'm thinking, I've got all this frozen stuff and this, what looks like a big fire. As I'm pulling out I see a police car turn the corner and fly down the street. Well, damn, I figure I better go check it out. One of the local schools is in the area the smoke was coming up and there was a lot of it! It turns out the fire was at a building so I pull into the parking lot quick as fire engines are pulling in. The flames were pretty big. The firemen got it out pretty quick, it turns out the fire was caused by a roofer's tar pot and there wasn't much damage. I grabbed my shots and was on my way home in less than 10 minutes and got home before everything melted.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

I Love Daytime Football...

Saturday was the first day in months that the weather wasn't just brutally hot, by that I mean it was only in the mid-90's that day. How convenient that it was also the first weekend of college football. Hardin-Simmons was opening up against Coe College, a team returning 21 of 22 starters. They were ranked in the top 10 of D3 football and were supposed to be really good. Their quarterback was a preseason D3 All-American. Hardin-Simmons had graduated a bunch of really good players, had a new coach, new quarterback, etc.
Basically, on paper, this game wasn't going to be close, and it wasn't. Hardin-Simmons won it 41-14. Not quite what was expected. Coe looked and played awful, maybe it was the heat, maybe something else, maybe Hardin-Simmons is a lot better than expected. Whatever it was, the home team looked and player really well. Add in a few long touchdown catches and some really good defense and hard hits and it ends up making for a few decent photos.






Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Friday Night Football Week 2...

Friday night I shot Stephenville coming to town to play Wylie. I was looking forward to it after Stephenville had knocked off the #1 team in the state the week before in a game that anyone who was there said it was one of the best games they had seen. For the first quarter, Wylie kept things in check pretty well in the first quarter with it ending only 14-7, thanks in part to Wylie returning a fumble for a touchdown. The Stephenville defense stifled Wylie.
Then in the second quarter Stephenville's offense woke up and the game got out of hand. That's when things started to get ugly. Once the offense started to click the game was over. Stephenville was just too much for the over-matched Bulldogs and there wasn't anything they could throw at them to slow them down. The good news for Wylie, if there was any coming out of this game, was this is the best team they'll play this year and there is no chance they'll meet in the playoffs, since Stephenville is 4A and Wylie is 3A.







Monday, September 5, 2011

College Football Opener...

Given that the majority of the football games I shoot are on Fridays, when I get to shoot a game on a Thursday, it's sort of like a bonus. That's the good thing about the first couple weeks of the season, Thursday night football. I'm not sure why, they're so popular at the start of the season. But, the first couple of weeks are pretty full.
This week I went to Staphenville for ACU's opener against Tarleton State. Last year, at home, ACU lit up Tarleton handing them their biggest loss in school history. So, I was kind of expecting something similar or at least a pretty easy win for the Wildcats. Well, it didn't quite turn out like that. Tarleton was a much improved team and ACU, well they eventually woke up and won the game but it was incredibly sloppy on both sides of the ball.
The first half of the game was really sloppy and neither team made all that great photos at all. There was a nice enough face mask shot and a couple others, which gave me a few shots to send in. The second half, though, had a lot more action, plus some really great drama in the fourth quarter. ACU, down 4 points in the last few minutes, made two drives in the last few minutes, one ending with them scoring with only a minute left. As I stood on the sidelines shooting some jube shots (one really nice thing about D2 football, is you can pretty much go wherever you want on the sidelines) Tarleton was marching down the field. They got all the way to the ACU 4 yard line with only 4 seconds left in the game. This was probably going to be the last play of the game. For stuff like this I'm always watching for the reaction shot rather than watching the actual play, which ended with an ACU interception. ACU squeaked out a close one. Too bad it was after deadline and the best shots ended up only making it online. Oh well, the slideshow looked good, at least.