Craig Grau: Rise up and feed - The Explorer: Sports

Craig Grau: Rise up and feed

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Posted: Tuesday, August 5, 2008 11:00 pm | Updated: 8:02 am, Thu Mar 24, 2011.

Cleats grinding on Marana High’s overgrown turf sounded the alarm. Or perhaps carbon dioxide signed our warrants as we exhaled.

I’ll never know. Either way, the siege was on.

Around floodlights, mosquito clouds rose and formed halos severe enough to make sailors take warning.

I stood unprepared as though the linemen decided to blitz the sideline’s sole reporter.  Coach Dudley offered me a Handi-wipe impregnated with bug dope, chemical Kevlar that saved my hide.

Tiger foes be warned, Emigh Road is irrigation country. Pack anti-aircraft rockets in your equipment trailer.

An hour before I busily scribbled notes for The Explorer’s football preview and wondered to what degree West Nile virus was really a rainy-day media crutch, I sat on a cooler in the coaching office, submerged in the depths of a fundraising meeting.

Dry-erase X’s and O’s on the play board carry only a slight lead on the unsung role of stalking neighborhoods and storefronts, to raise the extra thousands of dollars required to outfit a prep athletic team.

Football is a prime example, but only one.

Coaches prefer at least six footballs, at $45 each, for the quarterback’s practice. That doesn’t include balls for the team’s drills — let alone for the game. Then there’s pads for each player, starting at $150. Helmets bid out the same — plus custom logos.

Don’t forget all the shoes, athletic tape and diesel fuel, either.

Mosquitoes, at 2.5 milligrams,  pale compared to a defensive lineman’s bulk. Soon, the meaty players will swarm, peddling cheap discount cards for everyday needs like pizza, movie rentals and auto repair.

Marana charges families a maximum $120 for sports fees, a bargain that sets equipment managers back a few points by opening night. And the average coach will know enough about fundraising in a few weeks to qualify for a campaign spot on Obama’s tour bus.

I recommend against swatting those boys selling coupon cards outside the grocery.

Hook them up, open your wallets, and support your local athletes.

© 2014 The Explorer. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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HS Schedule

Tuesday, September 16

Boys Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Buena, Cienega at Marana

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge, Catalina at Amphi (Silverbell GC)

Catalina Foothills, Pueblo, Sahuarita at Sahuaro

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Mountain View at Rio Rico

Ironwood Ridge at Glendale Ironwood

Swimming (@4 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge, Sahuarita at Desert Christian

Wednesday, September 17

Girls Golf (@ 3 p.m.)

Rincon at CDO

Ironwood Ridge, Desert View at Flowing Wells (Silverbell)

Cross Country (@4:30)

Salpointe at Catalina Foothills

Palo Verde, Nogales at Marana

Rincon, St. Gregory at CDO

Sahuarita, Pueblo, Pusch Ridge at Desert View

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Empire at Marana (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

CDO at Queen Creek

Cienega at Mountain View

Sahuaro at Catalina Foothills

Walden Grove at Pusch Ridge

Thursday, September 18

Girls Golf

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Boys Golf

Sahuaro and Salpointe at Ironwood Ridge

CDO, Rincon, Sunnyside at Tucson High

Girls Volleyball (Fr 4 p.m., JV 5 p.m., Var 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Marana at Sahuarita

Ironwood Ridge at Sahuaro (4:30, 5:30, 6:30)

Catalina Foothills at Rincon

Pusch Ridge at San Manuel

Swimming (4 p.m.)

Marana vs. Tucson at Quincy Douglas Pool

Cienega at Marana

CDO, Ironwood Ridge at Amphi

Catalina Foothills at Sahuaro

Freshman Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Flowing Wells at Marana (4 p.m.)

Desert View at Mountain View

Cienega at CDO

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

JV Football (all games at 6 p.m. unless otherwise noted)

Amphi at Marana

Santa Cruz Valley at Pusch Ridge

Mountain View at Desert View

CDO at Cienega

Buena at Ironwood Ridge

Sahuarita at Catalina Foothills

Friday, September 19

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Mountain View, Ironwood Ridge at Mt. Carmel Invitational (San Diego, CA)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions

Football (@7 p.m.)

Pusch Ridge at Santa Cruz Valley

Catalina at Marana

Desert Vista at Mountain View

Ironwood Ridge at Buena

Cienega at CDO

Catalina Foothills at Sahuarita

Saturday, September 20

Boys Golf

Catalina Foothills, Ironwood Ridge, CDO, at Phoenix Aguila Invitational (all day)

Cross Country

Marana at Old Pueblo Invite(Lincoln Park)

Mountain View at San Diego

Catalina Foothills, CDO at Ojo Rojo (Chandler, AZ)

Swimming

Marana at Wolves Classic (Chandler High)

Girls Volleyball

CDO at Westwood Tournament of Champions

 

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