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State of mind

The Pressbox

Published: Thursday, March 6, 2014 10:25 a.m. CDT

One of the hardest parts of being a sports writer — interviewing coaches and players following a season-ending loss. It never gets easier, even in my 35th year as a professional journalist.

Whether the loss comes in the first round of playoffs, a semifinal, a championship game or at state tournaments, that interview is tough. Even with a regular-season loss, I find it tough to ask to interview student-athletes. I tend to allow the coaches to talk for their “kids” on the losses and what comes next for those kids.

Newton’s wrestlers only had to face their local newspaper reporter after losing at the state tournament. This week at the state girls’ basketball tournament an interview room is set up for media to do interviews with teams. Both coaches and three players they select from their team are brought to the room. Win or lose three players come to the interview room to a sea of reporters — television, radio and newspaper.

That has to be daunting for high school student athletes even when they win. Three Lynnville-Sully seniors represented the Hawks Monday morning following their quarterfinal loss to Colo-NESCO at Wells Fargo Arena. The Daily News interviewed them. They answered questions well, keeping their emotions in check. I don’t know if anyone else talked to them, but their community can be proud of them and the entire Lynnville-Sully girls’ basketball team, including coaches and managers.

They had a great State of mind going into the tournament and even in defeat.

Lynnville-Sully head coach Jerry Hulsing was named 2014 Iowa Girls Coaches Association Coach of the Year for 1A Southeast.

Named to the 2014 All-Iowa Honor Dance Team were Newton’s Tapanga Birkenholtz, Hadley Braaksma, Madison Mann and Morgan Mann; Colfax-Mingo’s Bailey Pease; CMB’s Taylor Charron, Emmy Cuveller and Lindsey Page; PCM’s Kelsey Beener, Ashlyn Breckenridge, Hayley Konek, Skylar McCombs, Tayler Phifer, Samantha Rosonke and Sanibel Welch; and Pella Christian’s Mariah Eekhoff, Allison Johnson and Lauren Peters. The honor dance team performs Saturday at the Class 3A championship game at Wells Fargo Arena

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