Here’s how the Redlands Bicycle Classic works, at least sometimes.
Expecting to host the Australian National Team in 2016, that squad pulled out of a full field at Redlands just before race day. Once the Aussies left, Redlands officials opened up a spot to the Gateway-Harley Davidson team.
Sepp Kuss, one of its team members, outlasted all the top racers to pull off a win at the Oak Glen stage in a free-for-all up the mountain. It’s possibly the most difficult stage, at least in terms of how many of the roster can climb that steep mountain.
He beat Lachlan Morton, Janier Acevedo and eventual champion Matteo Dal-Cin in that rugged stage.
Kuss, part of the unique slogan that’s attributed to Scott Welsh — “Where legends are born” — is now racing internationally.
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Sebastien Gutierrez was only one casualty of Redlands East Valley’s 0-10 football finish last fall. The casualty part is that he suffered a concussion, which kept him out of wrestling until Jan. 25.
On that date at the Bob Bellott Classic in Montclair, Wildcats’ coach Bryan Holcombe was finally able to turn Gutierrez loose on the unsuspecting heavyweight field.
Gutierrez tore through the 275-pound division in his season debut — right before Citrus Belt League finals on Feb. 8, that he won, incidentally — and stamped himself ready to improve on last year’s fifth place finish at CIF divisionals.
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If the University of Redlands basketball team — women’s division — keeps up its winning ways, the Lady Bulldogs will host this year’s SCIAC Tournament. The top four teams in the conference meet to determine the conference champion. Pomona-Pitzer handed Redlands its second loss last weekend. This is a hotbed of a conference.
Top prize: An automatic bid to the NCAA Division III tournament.
All of which brings plenty of intensity to those three games — the two semifinals and the championship.
All that longtime Lady Bulldogs’ coach Rich Murphy wants is a chance. He can teach the game to anyone. Can motivate an entire roster. Most of them don’t need motivation. Murphy can mix it up on X’s and O’s against any coach.
All he needs are willing players with smarts. On that campus, that’s not hard to find. It could be career 1,000-point scorer Cassandra Lacey. Or Jan. 20, SCIAC Athlete of the Week Alyssa Downs. Or a hopeful career neurosurgeon like Julia Balisteri.
For women’s basketball around these parts, this small campus team is your hoops headquarters.
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A story about recently deceased David Dangermond: Coached Dave’s son, Patrick, during his Little League days. Dangermond, who ran Dangermond’s Nursery for years, was a well-known landscaping guy. Showed up to pick up Patrick after a baseball practice one day.
I went to him with a question about a tree in my yard that wasn’t thriving. He said, “water it.” Oh. I did and that tree thrived.
RIP, Dave Dangermond.
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RIP II: On Friday, Jan. 24, an obit rang out on Redlands Unified’s email sites. It made the rounds quickly, in fact.
It was on Dennis Haughn, who cashed the lion’s share of his paychecks as a P.E. teacher (Moore Middle School, Redlands High), but was probably known far more as an assistant football coach and backer of youth sports.
My connection with him was simple: “Obrey, you ought to write a story on (fill-in-the-blank of an athlete).”
Or a coach.
Or another sports-related topic that he was privy to.
It didn’t seem like a request, either. He should’ve cashed in on another check as an assignment editor. Some coaches hold back, maybe because they didn’t want to step out of their lane. Not Dennis.
Guys like this are needed in every community.
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Really, really hate to do this to you, but here’s RIP III.
Paul Collins died on Jan. 12. Yankee fan. Notre Dame fan. From New York state. Helper of people. Athletic booster. Redlands baseball. Father. Husband. Mentally tough.
Known this guy for years. Saw him in a Mentone Subway shop back in December.