From the cheap seats

The Covington News - - SPORTS - SMITH

Well Cov­ing­ton, it has cer­tainly been a whirl­wind trip.

If you missed Wed­nes­day’s pa­per in­tro­duc­ing me, let me of­fer the op­por­tu­nity again.

My name is Matt Smith and I’m your new neigh­bor­hood sports edi­tor.

The move has been a quick one for me. An in­ter­view two Wed­nes­days ago, a fol­low-up con­ver­sa­tion that Fri­day, a job of­fer on Tues­day and a five-hour move just four days later.

It has been ex­haust­ing, to say the least.

While I’m try­ing to catch up on my sleep, I have al­ready been thrust into the sports world of Cov­ing­ton, spend­ing most of this week on the football field be­fore mak­ing my first stop on the soft­ball di­a­mond later in the week.

I come to Cov­ing­ton from North Carolina, from the tiny town of Lau­r­in­burg. In Lau­r­in­burg, we had just one high school, Scot­land High, and we just one team, the Fight­ing Scots. Hav­ing just one high school in the county, and with lit­tle else to do, cheer­ing on our Fight­ing Scots be­came more of a tra­di­tion than an ac­tiv­ity.

The football sta­dium's park­ing lot fills up al­most an hour be­fore kick­off.

Vol­ley­ball games are packed out. Base­ball? For­get base­ball. You bet­ter get there early so you have a spot along the fence.

While in Lau­r­in­burg, I had the op­por­tu­nity to cover two vol­ley­ball con­fer­ence ti­tles, a soft­ball con­fer­ence ti­tle and, the crown­ing jewel of Scot­land ath­let­ics, the 2011 state ti­tle.

I met lo­cal stars, cur­rent col­lege stand­outs and pro­fes­sional play­ers.

In Lau­r­in­burg, sports were in­fec­tious. And I feel that I’m catch­ing some­thing here.

Com­mu­nity sports are the lifeblood of a town. It's some­thing that you can­not find any­where else. Your lo­cal sports are unique to you, and I'm thank­ful I have the op­por­tu­nity to pro­vide you with the cov­er­age New­ton County wants, and more im­por­tantly, the cov­er­age it deserves.

I hope I have the same op­por­tu­nity I did in Lau­r­in­burg to cover cham­pi­onship sports here in New­ton County, and with the ded­i­ca­tion I have al­ready seen from the coaches, play­ers and fans, I think Cov­ing­ton's in good hands.

You meet a ton of peo­ple work­ing for a news­pa­per, and I can cer­tainly use a new set of friends.

I want to hear your sports sto­ries and how New­ton County sports im­pact you. What do you want to read? What do you want cov­ered? What mat­ters to you?

While I may not be new to sports, I am new to Cov­ing­ton, and I have a lot to learn. Good thing I'm not too hard­headed.

So Rams, Tigers and Ea­gles, thank you for al­low­ing me to cover your menagerie, no mat­ter how wild it gets.

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