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08/31/2014 - From The Press Box: First Week of Football, Softball Action Lived Up To Expectation
 There were a lot of rivalry matchup to start the 2014 high school football season, most of which lived up to expectations.

You knew Lincoln Southwest and Lincoln Southeast would live up to the hype.  The fact that nearly 6,000 fans showed up on a dreary Friday night in Lincoln is amazing.   I guarantee that if the weather was much better, you would have seen close to 8,500 to 9,000 people in attendance.

Still, the last-second dramatics of the 39-yard field goal from Southwest's Isaac Armstrong proved to be the cherry on top of the whipped-cream to the first weekend of football action.

In the game beforehand at Seacrest Field, Lincoln Northeast's 14-point rally in the fourth quarter over Lincoln High was capped off when Derrick Curtis intercepted an Anthony Evans pass with under a minute left in the game, sealed the win for the Rockets in a game that could have gone either way.  

How about Gretna's overtime win over Lincoln Pius X?  Bellevue East edging Lincoln East?  It was a good (and bad) start to the season for many Lincoln schools.

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The big game of the week on will be the Grand Island/Southeast game Thursday night at 7pm.  Islander quarterback Pierce Almond is receiving attention to play football and basketball at the next level and will lead a team into Seacrest Field that came off a 35-28 win Friday night over Kearney.

Southeast will look to bounce back from the heartbreaking loss Friday to Southwest.  The Knights will look to flex their muscle against a tough and rugged Grand Island ball club that appears to have the same kind of talent level and dominance it had from past state playoff teams.  The Islanders, right now, are the clear cut favorite outside the Omaha and Lincoln metro areas.


I have a great appreciation for fast pitch softball, since I play competitively at the men's level in southeast Nebraska.  High school softball in Nebraska is at a level where there are girls that legitimately can play at a higher level.

This past weekend, the LPS Classic was held at Doris Bair Softball Complex with powerhouse Lincoln Southwest winning pool 2 of the invite and Lincoln North Star winning in a mostly Class B dominated pool 3.  Class B teams like Elkhorn (pool 1), Norris (pool 4), Beatrice (pool 5) and Ralston (pool 6) showed how tough they are compared to everyone in Class A.

Wayne, from Class C, came in and showed the bigger schools just how good they are in the state.  The Blue Devils earned a 6-1 victory over Class A's Lincoln Southeast and 7-4 over Class B's Omaha Gross before falling to Elkhorn 12-0 in the pool 1 championship.

In Lincoln, I look for North Star and Southwest to be the teams to flourish, along with Southeast.   Don't ever rule out other city teams at any given time.   They're just as competitive as the rest of the teams.

Southwest dominated pool 2, winning 4-3 over North Platte and Fremont 17-1 before claiming the pool title with an 11-3 win over Lincoln Pius X.

North Star had a less stressful way to their pool championship, winning 9-1 over Columbus, 11-4 over Omaha Skutt and downing Waverly 10-2.  The Gators took out the Class A favorite Millard North 14-1 earlier last week.

Softball is a sport I highly encourage people to go watch and enjoy.   It's highly competitive and anything can happen.  There's not as much stoppage in softball like there is in baseball.  The pace is fast and can be a rush.   

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