New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - May 4, 1995, New Braunfels, Texas
8 ■ Herald-Zeitung ■ Thursday, May 4,1995
Sports Day A _
■ To talk with Sports
Editor Thomas Godley
about Sports Day, call L.
625-9144. ext. 24.
Herald-Zeitung photo by MICHAEL DARNALL The New Braunfels Unicorns, District 28-4A Co-Champions, are getting set for their district playoff game with Hays Saturday at 1:30 p.m. at Southwest Texas State University in San Marcos. Bradley Clark, above, will be among a contingent of hot-hitting Unicorn batters.
Spurs shouldn't shun New Braunfels faithful
Public relations people know that New Braunfels is home to thousands of loyal San Antonio Spurs fans. Not long ago they bought tickets for a special "Community Night" dedication to our city, and many of us felt like the Spurs really cared about people living just outside the big city. We Thomas were a part of a winning pro basket-rnrllpv ball organization.
“J go it was qUite a sjap m the face recently when our nearby NBA friends allowed the blackout of the team's first two playoff games and added insult to injury by depriving locals the option of paying for it.
At a time when the Spurs could easily lure legions of new fans aboard the championship bandwagon, the team pulls a stunt like an exclusive pay-per-view deal that leaves us out.
The Spurs are the kind of team looking to achieve legitimate NBA charm. This year they were beginning to show signs of maybe becoming a classy, championship franchise in the mold of Boston or Los Angeles. The image now seems a long way off, and potential fans around here aren’t as ready to sign up.
Not after last Friday night when many New Braunfels residents were left wondering if they'd missed payment on their cable bill or if weather had knocked out the television reception of Game I between the Spurs and the Denver Nuggets.
The screen went blank about five minutes into the opening period. Giving fans a taste of the action and
yanking it away made it all the more cruel.
Why tease viewers who get off late from work and want to spend a relaxing evening at home rooting for their NBA neighbors. TV Guide clearly listed the game: TNT (24) — NBA Playoff Game I. San Antonio Spurs vs. the Denver Nuggets. Why wasn't it on?
Smart basketball fans knows why. It has to do with money. The NBA can make a lot more if it sells the game rights to a cable company which then charges customers $20 for a special home-viewing connection. Paragon Cable of San Antonio purchased that right.
Because TNT was airing the same game nationwide to regular cable subscribers, Paragon also acquired the right to blackout that station to area customers, forcing them to pay for it The move was a business deal, pure and simple. No law against two entities sulking a deal. If fans are willing to pay the hefty price, let market forces fall into place.
Still it seemed the Spurs weren't too concerned about fixed-income fans who paid their cable bill and were looking forward to a free game on television.
That was only part of the sham. Worst was that New Braunfels fans were left completely out of the picture.
Regardless of the cable company, the blackout applied to all cable customers living within a 35-mile radius of San Antonio. New Braunfels lies about three miles inside that limit.
Some people blame TCI, the cable company which serves our area, for not offering the pay-per-view option to its local customers. TCI could buy the rights if it chose to.
Gary Kennedy, a New Braunfels citizen and longtime Spurs fan is one of those people critical of TCI, saying the company should offer the game. They 'told him they've tried. Kennedy said he investigated and learned that TCI hasn't made an effort for its customers. Like a lot of Spurs fans he wants answers. Mostly he just wants a chance to watch his favorite team
His point is that a company which buys exclusive rights to remove broadcasts from public airwaves should at least give those who are willing to buy it the chance to do so.
Some say take it a step further and tell Paragon it is not a sound public relations move cutting off a channel included in a cable package which residents of New Braunfels pay $25 a month to get.
Paragon will tell you they have no control. The blanket 35-mile blackout is an NBA rule. The Spurs claim to have even less say-so in the matter because it is entirely between Paragon and the NBA. The NBA is hard to reach for comment.
More than likely we will get a blackout in round two of the playoffs
Someone has to be responsible, and the sneaky suspicion is that the Spurs organization could do something to remedy this travesty if they truly wanted to. The blackout has nothing to do with ticket sales to the game. If they truly cared about Spurs fans in New Braunfels they would make a phone call the NBA. EX) it for the little guys.
(Thomas Godley is sports editor for the Herald-Zeitung)
Local sports briefs
Soccer tryouts slated
The Seguin Sidekicks are sponsoring Division ll team tryouts for boys and girs ages 14-18. Registration dates are set for May 7 at 1:30, Saturday, May 20 at 9:30 a m. and Saturday, June 3 at 9:30 a.m.
Tryouts will be at Seguin High School practice field on East College Street.
Players must bring a written release signed by a parent.
The Seguin Sidekicks was formed in 1994 to encourage player development through training and competitive level play. The team U-14 finished the fall season with an 8-2 record and were third in the Alamo Classic Tournament.
For more information, call Ray Stahl at (210) 379-8325.
Cougar Field site of 4A playoff game
The Pflugerville Panthers will take on the Churchill Chargers in a 5A state playoff game Thursday at 7 p.m. at Canyon High School's Cougar Field.
SVHS golf toumamont rescheduled for June
The Smithson Valley High School Booster Club Golf Scramble has been rescheduled for Saturday, June 17 at the Rebe‘cca Creek Golf Club in Spring Branch.
The tournament, originally scheduled for April 22 was reset because of conflicts with spring sports activities.
Proceeds from the tournament will go to support the SVHS athletic program and college scholarships awarded each year by the Booster Club to senior student athletes
Four-member team will begin with a shotgun start at 9'30 a.m.
Bull riding event on tap
The Wrangler Bull Riding Blowout is scheduled for Friday and Saturday, June 2-3 at Freeman Coliseum in San Antonio. Top major bull riders will compete. Tickets may be purchased at any Ticket Master outlet. Comal Saddlery offers two vouchers redeemable for two tickets to customers who purchase two Wrangler garments at the store. For more information, call Comal Saddlery at 625-9641.
SchDttevbahn Three Paries 5K Run scheduled
The eleventh annual Schlitterbahn 5K Run is set for Saturday, June 3, beginning at 8 a rn. on Liberty Street and Hinman Island in New Braunfels.
The event is dedicated in memory of Mary Ann Phillips, a member of the New Braunfels Running Club who died of breast cancer in 1993. Proceeds will benefit breast cancer research and Hospice New Braunfels.
The event also offers a 5-K competitive walk, a kids 1-K (10 and under) and wheelchair kids 1/2-K. Participants may bid for prizes in an open auction.
Prizes include season passes to Schlitterbahn Water Park in New Braunfels.
The top 300 finishers will have their name published in Southwest Athletics Magazine.
Entry fee for the 5-K and walk is $12 before May 25 and $15 after that date, including the morning of the race.
The kids 1-K fee is $10 or $5 without receiving a T-shirt. The wheelchair kids race is free
For more information, call Dan or Susan Phillips at 609-5030 or 625-3776
Spurs earn time to rest
By KELLEY SHANNON
Associated Press Writer
SAN ANTONIO (AP) — The San Antonio Spurs claim they don’t care whom they play in the Western Conference semifinals.
They’re just glad lo have time to rest and practice before the best-of-7 series starts against eitlier Seattle or Los Angeles.
The Spurs swept Denver 3-0 in their first-round senes with a 99-95 victory Tuesday in a wild game marred by technical fouls and fan misbehavior. At one point, fans threw cups, coins and other objects onto the court.
San Antonio could learn who it faces next as soon as today when the Lakers and Supersonics meet again. Los Angeles leads that series 2-1.
“Hopefully those other guys will battle it out for a while,” Spurs forward Sean Elliott said after reluming home Wednesday.
Other Spurs players said they have no preference, bul hinted Los Angeles would be their choice.
“Hopefully we’ll go to a place where we can get some golf ing in,” said center David Robinson. "I don’t know what the weather is like in Seattle.”
“We want some rest, but we don’t want tex) much rest,” added point guard Avery Johnson “Preferably, we want lo play on Saturday ”
The only way they could play then would be if the Lakers advanced.
The Spurs’ regular-season records against the two teams also might have something to do with preferring Los Angeles. San Antonio won its season series with the Lakers 3-1 but tied the Sonics 2-2.
Spurs coach Bob Hill said his team has broken through the "psychological battles” of playing Seattle. The Spurs won the last two games of their regular-season senes.
“We’ve played both teams fairly well,” he said. “We can win either series, I’m confident .’’If the Spurs’ next round doesn’t start until next week, Hill plans to take his team back to Kerrville, a town in the Texas Hill Country where San Antonio held training camp.
Go To The Kentucky Derby At Retama Park!
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Mint loups, Im Iazz And Trim Crown Racing.
Saturday, May 6th, bring your party to Retama Park to Watch and Wager on the World’s Greatest Sporting Event, The Kentucky Derby. Celebrate racing's most exciting moment at your new $80 million major league racetrack.
We’re throwing the BIGGEST DERBY PARTY in Texas!
A lucky fan will win a trip for two to see the second jewel of the Triple Crown, The Preakness Stakes in Baltimore, Maryland including race tickets, hotel accommodations and airfare.The winner will be drawn by the winning jockey of Retama Park’s $2S,(HH) Julep Cup Stakes (7th race).
Retama Park is Your Ticket To The Tripie Crown.
Retama Park offers a triple threat for the Triple Crown: fun, excitement and entertainment you can bet on. Enjoy live Jazz and Blues from 4:00 pm - 10 (H) pm. In the spirit of Kentucky, Mint Juleps will be served in special souvenir Kentucky Derby glasses and Mint Julep souvenir cups.
Call (210) 651-7100
Special Derby Day Schedule at Retama Park
9:30 a.m. - Gates open
10:30 a.m. * First race from Churchill Downs 2:30 p.m. - Handicappers analyze the Derby 4:30 p.m. - Running of the 121st Kentucky Derby
Reatma Park live Racing
6:00 p.m. * Live racing at Retama Park
Play for keeps!
■hi ieicb $ ai*■
Churchill Downs, Louisville, Kentucky May 6,1995