Melanie McDaniels: Fond farewell

Greener pastures or bust


The rumors are true. Well, I guess that wouldn't really make a rumor then, would it?

I have resigned from the Craig Daily Press, and this is my final hurrah.

I first want to thank everyone in Craig for the support, suggestions and experiences I have had since beginning here in July.

I had big shoes to fill with David Pressgrove's departure, and although David and I are two different people, I hope that in some small way I provided this community with the sports coverage and in-depth reporting it desired.

From the wrap-up of summer sports -- the Triple Crown World Series, Ride-N-Tie rodeo, the Moffat County Fair to the beginning of fall sports, I hope I gave an accurate and balanced review to what was and is happening in Moffat County athletics.

Since coming here, I have learned many things. I've even managed to anger a few people. But I also believe I have made the community of Craig think -- think about what is going on in young athletes' lives, what their accomplishments on and off the field and court has meant and overall giving you a chance to get to know them outside of the 'box.'

The hardest part of the resignation is leaving the athletes, the ones who go out and strive for perfection, the perfect pass, the perfect goal, the ultimate sacrifice, long days, road trips and the ultimate victory.

During the past six months I have gotten an inside look at high school sports. From the sideline and the press box, I have seen the anguish of a fumble to the excitement of the game-winning kill.

I was here to witness a 16-year drought come to an end with the Moffat County girls volleyball team securing victory against Steamboat Springs in September. I saw a 2-4 football team make a 180-degree turnaround and head to the Class 3A playoffs.

I have gotten a chance to get to know the coaches and a peek at how they plan, think and decide to do what they do and see their love of the game.

The 2006 state cross-country meet was an experience like no other, with senior boys Jeremy Bird and Jake Miller leading the way with top 10 finishes, and sophomore Alicia Nelson first capturing the girls regional title, before finishing in the top 10 at state.

I am sad to be leaving the profession of journalism, but will continue to appreciate what athletes sacrifice to achieve their goals.

Again, thank you Moffat County and the community of Craig for opening your doors and gyms to a self-professed sports fanatic.

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