Members of the Springfield Catholic Fighting Irish celebrate after winning Wednesday’s Class 3 championship game over the Christian Eagles during the 2014 MSHSAA Baseball Championships at T.R. Hughes Stadium on June 4, 2014 in O’Fallon, Mo. (David Welker/For the News-Leader)
Two weeks ago, I made my second visit to T.R. Hughes ballpark in O’Fallon, Missouri for the second year the Missouri State High School Baseball State Championships were held there. Last year, we had a week full of rain that postponed several games and we got drenched. This year however, we only had rain the last day, and the rest of the week was beautiful weather. Below are some of my frames from the week, including a group of photos from a game feature I shot for the News-Leader.
For the second year in a row, the Springfield Catholic Fighting Irish baseball team made it to the State Championship game. My job for the Springfield News-Leader was to provide coverage of the Irish seeking a state championship win. They ended up defeating the Christian Eagles 8-3 to claim the Class 3 title.
Last weekend marked the fourth time in nearly five years that I have covered track. It has always been one of those sports to elude me. However, it it is always a breath of fresh air to shoot something different and try and find new ways to look at things. Since this was the second week in a row covering the state track meet, I had a general idea of what to expect as far as access is concerned. As I quickly found out, there were times where I was granted access that I was completely surprised about, and others that left me scratching my head at it being pulled or denied. All in all, I was pleased with what I walked away with this past week, and am looking forward to moving forward with the rest of my summer.
A week and a half ago or so, I got a call asking if I would shoot a portrait of one of the better local high school baseball players for the News-Leader. Since I am always looking to do a nice sports portrait, and come up with new ideas for these, I was pretty excited. We were supposed to have bad weather, so I was actually excited to do some shooting inside a netted batting cage or something, but the weather held off and we were able to shoot outside. I had roughly ten minutes to set up, shoot and get off the field before they thew the tarp on the infield. After shooting a few ideas on the mound, I moved to the dugout to create a few more frames. Here are a few of the images of Logan-Rogersville Wildcats pitcher Jacob Schlesener, who is committed to the University of Arkansas.
Lanthrop’s Caleb Osborn celebrates after defeating Maplewood’s Romelle Person in the 120-pound championship match during the 2014 MSHSAA Class 1 Wrestling Championships at Mizzou Arena on February 22, 2014 in Columbia.
There is so much I love about the wrestling championships. I enjoy pretty much every part of it other than that the backgrounds are rarely ever clean, but, that’s life. As a former wrestler, there is a special place in my heart for the sport, and I really look forward to shooting it. Yes, it is a challenge and can be a bit repetitive. But there is something about the sport that I absolutely can’t get enough of. Maybe it is the fact that this is a one-on-one sport where anything can happen? Maybe it is the fantastic jubs that happen on a regular basis when a match comes to a halt with the slap of a hand on a mat? I don’t know, but I can’t get enough. This past week’s championships were great. I didn’t sleep much ( I got a total of 12 hours over the total of 4 days and each day was at least a 15 hour day). The floors were hard, and my back hurt by the end of the week, but I walked away with a large group of images that I can say I am proud to have my name under and published by 3 different papers. A huge thanks goes out to the staff at the St. Joseph News-Press, Kansas City Star, and the Southeast Missourian, who made my photos look good both online and in print. I look forward to being back in Columbia in two weeks to cover the basketball state championship for a variety of clients. This was a great way to open 2014!
If someone would have told me at the beginning of the 2013 NFL regular season that the Kansas City Chiefs would be 8-0 and the only undefeated team left, I would of never believed you, and would have probably called you crazy. Well, I guess the joke is on all of us, because that is the reality. Sunday’s game against the Cleveland Browns marks many firsts for me. It was my first trip to Kansas City for Getty Images, my first trip to Arrowhead Stadium, my first time shooting and (obviously) my first time shooting the Chiefs. (It was also my first time eating some KC BBQ- Thanks David and John!) Either way, it was an extremely enjoyable experience and everyone involved was very welcoming of the new guy in the photo room. The Chiefs were moving the ball effectively and looked like they were going to handily take care of the Browns, taking a 20-10 lead into the half. But the Browns were not going away, and would score seven points and holding the Chiefs to a field goal late in the fourth quarter. The Chiefs would hang on to win 23-17 in front of 74,307 fans.
Springfield Catholic third baseman Matt Tipton (4) reacts quietly in the dugout after losing the 2013 MSHSAA class 3 championship game against the Fatima Comets at T.R. Hughes Ballpark on May 31, 2013 in O’Fallon, Missouri.
Two weeks ago, the 2013 Missouri high school state baseball tournament got underway at T.R. Hughes Ballpark in O’Fallon, Missouri. Unfortunately, as the title of this post suggests, it became known as “wet week in O’Fallon”. In the seven days of the tournament (which was only supposed to last five), we saw more than six inches of rain fall on the field. I helped the amazing grounds crew at the ballpark tarp and de-tarp the field about 15 times over the course of the week, which was a cool and new experience for me. Maybe something to add to the resume down the road perhaps? Either way, I love this week of baseball every year. I get a chance to see the best teams in the state battle it out for the elusive state title. The thing about shooting the state championships is that every photographer is always looking for that ONE emotional shot. The image showing a team either elated or entirely broken. Because of my position with MSHSAA, I am usually the first one on the field and am blessed to have unique access to many shots. Here are a few of my favorite images from the week, but you can see my entire take at the link HERE.