Tuesday, November 8, 2011

University of Portland Pilot women

The Pilot women,  whose decades long standing as a Western powerhouse faced a difficult road this past season, were energized to receive an at-large slot in the NCAA tournament despite their won loss record.  And perhaps there's some justice in the selection as the young team may be hitting its stride.  

That being said,  I was saddened through the weeks to see that The Oregonian coverage of the Pilot season shrunk from 'front of the section with photo' coverage to inside bottom notes about the sad outcome of the most recent game with a single column inch.   This approach to journalism is discouraging.  Instead of a constant commentary on the challenges of the season and a respectful reportage,  our town's daily just let go and didn't cover the team.  I guess the theory is that if they're not winning all the folks who followed them lost interest.   Sad really.  The Pilots have a great program and an off year deserves as much coverage as any other.  Danielle Foxhoven and  Hailee DeYoung in goal shouldn't leave their college careers without acknowledgement of their achievements.  

If you think this is simply grousing,  I'd point out that The Oregonian's approach bears risks for our other soccer favorites,  the Timbers.   Will the paper decide that a bad season in the future deserves only marginal attention?  I don't see that happening with the Trailblazers or the Duck n Beaver sport programs.   But the ink this past season for the Pilots makes me wary.  

We'll see.  In the meantime,  the Lady Pilots have a chance to chew their way into a little more memorable place in the annals.  The NCAA has offered them the chance.  My guess is that the women from the Bluff will use it well.