Skier salutes Longhorns |

Skier salutes Longhorns

Dear Editor:I’d like to congratulate the Basalt Longhorns baseball squad on an impressive and record-breaking season (although, coming from an Aspen boy, it hurts my local pride to do so).During the last couple of months, I’ve been keeping tabs on their improvement and attitude, wins and losses, injuries and rallies. I couldn’t be more impressed with the results. Without question, the team’s success marks a turning point in the school’s baseball tradition. The list of accomplishments is long and besides the point, but also worth mentioning: Most wins in school history at 10 (previous high was five) Highest league finish in school history (third) Most consecutive wins in school history (six) Four first-team all-league players (previous high was 1) First-ever wins versus Roaring Fork, Hotchkiss and Gunnison First-ever district final four First regional/state championship appearance in school history My congratulations first and foremost to the players. I commend your hard work and spirit. Above all, I admire your imagination (your ability to make what is seemingly impossible possible … and, trust me, it was seemingly impossible). I don’t believe there is better satisfaction than personalizing the cliché “dreams come true” with a version of your choosing and an ending of your making. Now discover what “savor the moment” means. You’ve earned it. Of course, there’s no chance of me ending this without congratulating coach Rick Ryan for his exceptional coaching and leadership in this matter. There is good reason for all of you who know me to suspect my sincere enthusiasm over the results of the ’06 Longhorns season, as my support for coach Ryan has always been complete, informed and … well … wordy. However, I truly respect and admire his coaching style, his compassion for the athletes of the Roaring Fork Valley and, most of all, his tendency to believe in his players. His faith in his players’ abilities (both physical and mental) to achieve at high levels (both personally and as a team) despite the odds and despite the ends is what sets him apart from other coaches. I can tell you firsthand that, fundamentally, it has never, ever been about wins and losses (let alone records) for coach Ryan. It’s been about doing your very best, come rain or shine or, in our case, snow. Simply put, the more times you give it your best, the more times you’ll do your best. And in essence, that’s the real reward. The rest is just gravy. And sometimes, especially when you’re really hungry, that gravy tastes good. Real good.Lucas FarrellAspen High School, ’99

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