Jan. 12, 2005 - AHEAD OF THE GAME: When its ancient calendar hits the New Year Feb. 9, the Chinese will embrace the year of the Rooster. Before the bells and whistles go off in celebration from Canal Street in New York to Broadway Boulevard in Los Angeles' Chinatown, the EXPLORER also will begin a new year dedicated to a bird.

After serving Northwest sports full-time for the past seven months, the EXPLORER is proud to extend its coverage to the Catalina Foothills area.

Nothing defines the sports scene of this flourishing northern Tucson area better than the region's only high school, Catalina Foothills High School. The Class 4A school, with its winged mascot, the Falcon, will add 17 boys and girls teams to the 113 high school sports squads already annually covered by the sports desk at the EXPLORER.

From Marana High School to CFHS, a distance slightly less than 25 miles, Falcon sports becomes the eighth high school in the EXPLORER's cache of high schools.

But the high schools are only one of the pieces of the sports jigsaw puzzle. With the addition of the Catalina Foothills, comes the golf and tennis, to name a few of the more prominent adult and kid sports, found at Skyline Country Club, Westward Look Resort, the Westin La Paloma Resort and Country Club, Loews Ventana Canyon Golf and Racquet Club, the Tucson Racquet Club and the Tucson Jewish Community Center.

Lest we not forget all the sports found at Mehl Park, including Inferno and Desert Thunder softball and Arizona Youth Soccer.

When do we extend south to Flowing Wells?


Got any sports tips of your own? We would love to hear about them. You can send them to cwuensch@explorernews.com or by calling the sports desk directly at the EXPLORER at 797-4384 ext. 112. We look forward to hearing from you.


Marana High School wrestling is slowly rebuilding its program, literally. Within the past school year the Tigers have upgraded their wrestling facility with some modern amenities coupled with a sliver of the past.

The most notable addition to the wrestling facility is the storage closet. The Home Depot recently donated all the materials necessary for the program to create a walk-in storage bin for its equipment. Couple the new closet with its new wall of fame and trophy case and the facility is close to becoming the home-away-from-home that head coach Rob Lindsey has envisioned since he took over the program four years ago.

The new look is breeding new confidence, even if the program is still five to seven years away from regaining its status as a major wrestling high school. It will take dedication, but Lindsey believes those willing to put in the hard work will reap its benefits. Hence the new banner that hangs above the facility's doorway: "Those who stay become champions."

"This is the first year I feel things are in order," said Lindsey. "I think I was nervous the first couple of years and it showed."

Lindsey and his wrestlers are asking for old pictures of past teams and any other memorabilia the program may have lost. The paraphernalia and pictures will be proudly displayed in the wrestling facility along with the school's wrestling trophies and other fond memories of yesterday.

As for the team of the present day, Lindsey believes his squad can finish in the top 20 in the Class 4A. Last year the Tigers ended the year third in the Sonoran Region and 41st in the state.


Marana High School pitcher, Ryan Perry is getting offers to bring his golden arm to Pima Community College. Originally a shortstop, Perry made a name for himself on the hill last season when he took the mound in his first ever start. In a game against Santa Rita, the 6-foot-2-inch right-hand pitcher shut down a tough Eagles squad by hurling six strong innings and allowing just four runs.


I'd like to extend my sincerest gratitude to the ladies of the Tucson Women's Hockey League team, the Chilly Peppers. Thanks for allowing me to throw on some pads and join the squad in a workout Jan. 9 at Polar Ice. It's been more than five years since this relocated New Jersey-ite donned a pair of skates and hit the ice. Once the soreness in my legs goes away perhaps I'll join you ladies again one day. Best of luck against the University of Arizona Jan. 15. Now, how about we work on fulfilling my true life-long dream: driving the Zamboni.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.