With the title games on the docket this coming weekend, and the available games are now whittled down to the bare minimum (even if they are the title games), I found myself reflecting on this juncture of the football season while attending the semifinal game at Big Sandy this past weekend.
It seems with each passing year, the ongoings of the other playoff games (i.e., those that are happening at the same time) become more available—even the other classes. For example, during the Big Sandy-Savage six-man shoot-out, we were updated several times by the announcer on the progress of the eight-man game at Chinook with Power-Dutton-Brady. Later we heard updates on the score in the other six-man semifinal game between Denton and Hysham. I suppose we can credit the infusion of cell phones for this effortless flow of scores between the obscure towns of Montana and other western states.
Oddly, there came no word from the showdown at Wibaux with Drummond nor was there anything mentioned about the other class games around the state. I wondered, was this simply because the games that were reported were fairly close by? It seemed reasonable that there might be someone from Big Sandy attending the game in Chinook because their nephew was playing, or something like that. And, wouldn’t Big Sandy have sent a scout to the Denton game should the Pioneers emerge victorious, allowing the scout to call in scores while working up a fresh scouting report on the victor from that game?
As the Big Sandy-Savage game was drawing to its exciting close, we were informed that Chinook had overtaken Power-Dutton-Brady in the fourth quarter and Denton was still in control of their game with Hysham. Despite all of this, after the Warriors of Savage were crowned the victors at Big Sandy, there was never another word on those other games. Walking to my truck afterwards, I kept my ears perked for that one last announcement, but it never came.
Into the Montana darkness and on to Eddie’s Corner, I remained in the metaphorical darkness as well regarding the outcome of those other games. At first I considered checking on-line via my phone to see if the scores were posted, but decided I would wait and hear about the outcomes via the old-fashioned method—reading about them in the next day’s newspapers.
I half expected to hear about one of the other games while eating my dinner at the Eddie's Corner café—given it is such a central junction in the state. If that had been the case, I would have welcomed the news.
Nevertheless, after dinner I walked out into the darkest outlying areas of the truck stop’s parking area—beyond the parked semis—climbed into my cold sleeping bag in the bed of my pickup and wondered if Chinook had indeed held their lead after claiming it late in the game. “And what about Drummond and Wibaux,” I asked myself as I set the alarm on the cell phone? Was the Rainbow Club in Wibaux jumping with delight or were they drowning their sorrows again, almost a year later after losing to Drummond at home in the title game?
In an era that is being defined for its instant gratification, I fell asleep at Eddie’s Corner content with the idea of waiting to read about the scores in the Sunday newspapers, and therefore in synch with the rhythms of small town high school football.