Sports desk gets a spring cleaning

We're winding down May, folks, and summer can't get here fast enough and the big question of the day is ... is ... will the Hood Canal Bridge open as scheduled?

The desk is full of fluff, tidbits and nonsense, so let's take the broom and sweep aside information you just can't live without. No fair skipping items, folks.


Mark Aug. 1 on the calendar for the once-a-year auto thrill show put on by former auto daredevil Bob Hanna. The show will be at 8 p.m. at Port Angeles Speedway and Bob promises 20 great auto stunts for the low price of $15 for adult, $5 for 11 and under.

Somehow the organizer gets drivers to blast through firewalls, dive bomb into parked cars, go through an ice wall, crash and roll cars and more and it's a fun time. There will be skydiving, music and more, co-sponsored by 7 Cedars Casino, Wilder Auto Center, PenPrint, High Tide Seafoods and Discount Tire.

Bob is leaving nothing to chance ... the rain date is Aug. 7.

Prep stuff

The Washington State Interscholastic Activities Association has approved a shot-clock amendment by a 42-11 vote and boys basketball games will be governed by a 35-second shot clock beginning this coming round ball season.

Washington is one of eight states to use a 30-second clock for girls games and that will not change as it's the same in college. Now our state will be the seventh state to use a high school shot clock.

How will it affect games? It probably won't be much different except at the end of games when overmatched teams like to hold onto the ball, spread the offense and go for easy shots or no shots at all.

Right now, seldom does the 30-second clock go off for the girls and the boys will have five more seconds to get the offense going.

Other prep stuff

The state group approved a measure to have a running clock for football games with margins of 45 points or more after halftime. A similar amendment for basketball failed. The eight-man teams have had a 45-point mercy rule for years that stops the game, but bigger schools will just let the clock run.

An amendment to make girls lacrosse a WIAA-sanctioned sport failed for the second straight year, 41-11. By the way, the very successful boys lacrosse program in Port Angeles, which included girls, has been scrapped due to upcoming budget cuts, but there is talk that an Olympic Peninsula lacrosse team is being formed to take the Rider schedule next spring.

Look for C teams to be cut in Sequim and Port Angeles, along with some coaches, and there probably will be a drastic cut in middle school sports and out-of-area travel.

I know it would take kids out of school early, but why doesn't the Olympic League make a schedule that would send both boys and girls JV and varsity teams to the same site on the same night? The preliminary games could start at 3:30 p.m. at most schools with more than one gym and those schools with one gym could farm out some games to middle school gyms.

Look for all schools to charge athletes to play a sport.

Even more preps

Congratulations to the Sequim fastpitch team for making the state playoffs this weekend in Eastern Washington. The Sequim baseballers gave it all they had, but fell short in the regional. P.A.'s girls are also in the fastpitch state in Tacoma and a slew of track and field stars will be running, jumping and throwing at state.

Wednesday whirl

It's been a wild month and congrats to Ole Bekkevar and his crew who really put on a fast-paced logging show during the 114th ditch festival. Ole is the new head honcho, but long-time (21 years) organizers Dave Bekkevar and Kevin Kennedy were there for help and will continue to be involved behind the scenes.

Can you believe the 114th parade was the first one old man Bekkevar had seen and participated in since the logging show began 22 years ago?

The Port Angeles Salmon Club's ninth halibut derby is in the books and the top prizes left town as 691 anglers took part. Steve Marmon of Bellingham took home $5,000 for his 77-pound halibut.

Stratos Flanders of Corvallis, Ore., took home $2,500 for his 75-pounder and Mike Buss of Bonney Lake netted $1,500 for his 74. Frank Casey's fish was 72 pounds and he took home $1,200 to Belfair.

Low fish on the ladder was 40 pounds and Dave Stonebreaker of Port Angeles won $135. Sequim anglers on the Saturday ladder at one time were Joel Herb, Dave Fowler and Robert Stewart.

Columns by KONP 1450 AM sports announcer Scooter Chapman appear weekly in the Sequim Gazette. He can be reached via e-mail at

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