The calm between seasons

Sonja Karp, NLJ Sports Editor

It seems like just last week that the fall season of sports got under way at Newcastle High School, and here we are already with all four of them being completed.


The official start of the winter season is two weeks away, so there’s not a lot happening around the state regarding high school competitions, but the kids and coaches are far from relaxing during this hiatus.


Volleyball players are shifting their focus from pass, set, hit to ball handling, shooting form, post moves and defensive strategy that they will need to refine as they hit the court again, but this time for hoops.


Or they may be getting limbered up to try wrestling on for size, given that for the first time, there will be a separate and legitimate Lady Dogie wrestling team this year.


Football players and cross country runners are also changing gears as they get ready for basketball or wrestling seasons. Or maybe, they are diving into the pool to prepare for the swimming season that commences in three weeks.


And then there are other athletes for whom the winter season marks the beginning of their 2023-2024 high school sports competition.


Whatever the sport may be, NHS athletes are, in whatever their respective arena may be, knocking off the rust and sharpening their skills in open gym, mat or pool so that they are ready to hit the ground running when practice begins in a couple of weeks.


Coaches aren’t “coaching,” but they are supervising and getting an idea of what their teams’ strengths and weaknesses may be, what tools they have to work with, and what they may need to do in order to get their teams ready to compete against a tough 3A East Conference again this year.


As for me, I have mixed emotions about the calm between seasons. In one respect, I am feeling a sense of relief that there will be a few weeks of down time where there will be no competitions to report on.


But, by the same token, there are also no competitions to watch and get excited about.


I am excited to see what this year in basketball looks like for both the girls and the boys. Like in volleyball, the girls graduated most of the players from last season’s squad who led the Lady Dogies to a third-place finish at the state tournament, which was the highest in Newcastle history since 1980.


The two teams that finished first and second in 2023 were Douglas and Buffalo, and they will be returning a bulk of their talent from last year’s squads. As such, I’ll be interested to see how our young and inexperienced ballers can match up with the quadrant and the conference. 


While I am always interested in how our kids fare across the various sports, I once again have a dog in the hunt when it comes to girls’ basketball, since my daughter will be an official member of the coaching staff this season.


It’s awesome to see former Dogies come back to help the current and future Dogies try to reach their goals, and she won’t be the only former Dogie on the sidelines this season.


Although we are currently enjoying the calm between the seasons, there is a lot to look forward to brewing on the horizon.


News Letter Journal

News Letter Journal
14 W. Main St.
P.O. Box 40
Newcastle, WY 82701
Ph: (307) 746-2777
Fax: (307) 746-2660

Email Us