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6th-ranked Piedmont hammers Northwest Classen in season opener

Blake Colston
sports@piedmontnewsonline.com

Blake Colston/Gazette
Piedmont’s Bre Reid leaps to make a pass during the Wildcats opening night win over Northwest Classen.

There was some good, some bad and some ugly Tuesday night at Collett Fieldhouse. But most importantly for the sixth-ranked Piedmont Lady Wildcats, there was a 56-31 season opening victory over No. 20 Northwest Classen.

Senior Hayden Priddy scored 11 and Hannah Reasoner added 10 in a balanced opening night win in which all but one Piedmont player that entered the game, scored.

“We had multiple people scoring and making good passes and getting assists,” Piedmont head coach Jamie Hill said. “We had a few sloppy moments and a couple breakdowns defensively, so those are things we’ll have to work on, but overall a solid opening night win I thought.”

The Wildcats’ defense carried the play in the first half, limiting an athletic Knights’ squad to just five points by half. Piedmont led by 23 at the break, 28-5, and extended the lead to 27 by the end of the third quarter.

“Only giving up five points in the first half is pretty impressive defensively against any team,” Hill said. “I think we’re going to continue to grow and work together, but I was pleased with how balanced we were.” Read more →

Signed with a smile: Morris picks SWOSU

Blake Colston
sports@piedmontnewsonline.com

Madi Morris’ smile said it all.

The senior shortstop for Piedmont’s softball team had fulfilled a lifelong dream by signing her National Letter of Intent with Southwestern Oklahoma State University’s softball program.

After an illustrious career that included three trips to the state tournament and a spot in last season’s state championship game, Morris officially began the next chapter of her softball career Wednesday afternoon.

“This is a great feeling,” Morris said. “Not many people get to do this. I’m thrilled about it.”

Unlike some recruiting stories, the match between SWOSU and Morris wasn’t one that was cultivated over a long period of time.

“At the beginning of softball season I had no idea of where I wanted to go,” she said. “And at the time I didn’t have a lot of options.”

That changed quickly, though. Despite playing away from her customary first base position as a senior because of necessity, Morris had a big senior season. Morris hit three home runs and drove in 33 runs while scoring 16 and batting .308. Read more →

Gossen pleased with first season in Class 5A

Blake Colston
sports@piedmontnewsonline.com

Piedmont head coach Drew Gossen struggled to characterize his first year as head coach of a Piedmont program in its first season in Class 5A.

The Wildcats missed the playoffs by a game and finished 3-7 overall, but were competitive in every game of the 2014 season.

“That’s a discussion we’ve been having with our kids and coaches over the last week,” he said. “There’s a lot of different ways to look at it. I think in a lot of ways we had a lot of success.”

Piedmont lost six straight to open the season, but battled back by winning three consecutive district games down the stretch to pull within one victory of the postseason. A 19-7 loss at Bishop McGuinness that could’ve gone the Wildcats’ way derailed those dreams, but also characterized why Gossen believed 2014 was anything but a failure. His team competed in every game, pushing district heavyweights Carl Albert and Deer Creek and sticking within two scores of Guthrie into the second half.

“There was a never a game all season long that we just got blown out from start to finish,” he said. “Our kids saw that we can play with Carl Albert, we can play with Guthrie. That’s a big thing and a tribute to our seniors and all the things that they did.” Read more →

Reid inks with Southern Utah

Blake Colston/Gazette
Bre Reid addressed a crowd inside Piedmont High School’s gymnasium at a signing party for her and four other PHS athletes on Wednesday.

Blake Colston
sports@piedmontnewsonline.com

Piedmont basketball star Bre Reid was overwhelmed with emotion of all kinds.

As she signed her National Letter of Intent with Southern Utah University in Piedmont High’s School auxiliary gymnasium Wednesday afternoon, everything she had accomplished and everything that was still ahead seemed to culminate in one special moment.

So much so, that, when Reid stood up to speak to and thank a large contingent of family, friends and coaches in attendance, she started to cry. An appreciation for everything those in attendance had meant to her and still do brought the tears as much as anything, she said.

“When I go to Utah, no one’s going to know me,” she said. “Here everyone knows everybody and it’s going to be so different out there. It’s been great having that and growing up with that here in Piedmont. It’s going to be a big difference going out there.”

Reid had her parents there on her big day. Father Stan Reid on her left and mom Tammy Lawson on her right, both of whom played a big role in her evolution as a player and as a person.

“This is her dream and this was her day,” Stan Reid said, who also briefly became emotional before composing himself. “She’s worked hard for this and today is what it’s all about. I didn’t want to cry and take any the attention off of her.” Read more →

Anderson floats jail trust idea

By Traci Chapman

Commissioner David Anderson on Tuesday proposed a possible jail trust to oversee both the children’s justice center and county jail operations.

Canadian County Commissioners held a Nov. 18 joint meeting with the county excise board. Pictured from left – District 3 Commissioner Jack Stewart, excise board member Lynda Ramsey, District 1 Commissioner Phil Carson, excise board member Larry Hodges and District 2 Commissioner David Anderson. (Traci Chapman/Gazette)

The District 2 commissioner floated the trust idea, which could be formed either under Title 19 or Title 60 of the Oklahoma Statutes, during a joint meeting of the Board of County Commissioners and County Excise Board. The two boards met to discuss issues at Gary E. Miller Canadian County Children’s Justice Center after the Oklahoma Attorney General’s Office issued an Opinion received Oct. 31 stating the center could not utilize sales tax to fund operations.

The Opinion set off a flurry of activity, as county officials worked to transfer expenditures to the county use tax, the only unallocated funds available to commissioners. About $1.2 million in use tax was on hand, with about $60,000 to $70,000 coming in to county coffers through that means each month, County Clerk Shelley Dickerson said.

Excise Board members Lynda Ramsey and Larry Hodges gave formal approval to utilize that tax to fund center operations on an interim basis; member Leroy Hodges was absent. The pair then asked commissioners how the county could fund an $8.1 million approved center budget on use tax, which they said would clearly run short. Read more →

School board filing begins Dec. 1

By Traci Chapman

A Piedmont School Board seat will be up for grabs in a Feb. 10 election, and the filing period for candidates is rapidly approaching.

Jerrod Moser

Anyone wishing to file for the seat – for Office No. 5 – must do so between Dec. 1 and Dec. 3. Filing ends at 5 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 5, Canadian County Election Board Secretary Wanda Armold said. All candidate filings must be completed at the election board office, located at 200 S. Bickford in El Reno, Armold said.

“The Board of Education positions at stake will be filled at the annual school election scheduled for Feb. 10, 2015,” Armold said. “If no candidate receives more than 50 percent of the total votes cast in this election, the two candidates receiving the highest number of votes will meet in a runoff election on Tuesday, April 7, 2015.

“If only one candidate files an election will not be necessary,” she said.

Jerrod Moser currently holds Piedmont’s Office No. 5 seat. It was unclear whether he intended to file for the seat again this term as of press time.

Piedmont Board of Education meetings are held the second Monday of every month beginning at 6 p.m. in the Piedmont Administration Annex, located at 723 Piedmont Road. Read more →

Shriners parade set for Saturday

By Traci Chapman

India Shriners will bring their unique brand of entertainment and ceremony to a parade held in Piedmont Saturday, Nov. 22.

India Shriner Gene Dosier in a recent Mustang parade. The Shriners are headed to Piedmont Saturday for a fall celebration. (Traci Chapman/Gazette)

The fall ceremonial parade is part of Oklahoma City India Shrine’s 120th anniversary, 2014 Potentate John Lynch Jr. said. Chartered in 1894, India Shrine is one of 193 shrine temples in North America and Europe, Lynch said.

“We were here 13 years before statehood even, and we are very proud of our history and heritage,” Lynch said. “The complete name of our order is the ‘Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine International’ – thus, we get the reference to our members as Nobles or Shriners.”

Shriners are men who have first become Masons, Lynch said. Masons’ organizations go back much further than Oklahoma City’s shrine, with the first Grand Lodge formed in 1717 in London.

“By the turn of the 20th Century, there were 79 Shrine Temples,” Lynch said. “While almost all of them were engaged in some sort of philanthropic work, it wasn’t until 1920 that a resolution to establish a hospital for children.” Read more →

Weather update/closings

By Traci Chapman

UPDATE – 7:10 p.m.

Piedmont Public Schools have now announced they will be closed tomorrow, as will Canadian Valley Technology Center.

 

As of 6:30 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 16, Piedmont Public Schools have not announced any closings. However, several area schools and businesses have begun to notify us of closings. Those are:

Active Church, Yukon – Sunday activities canceled

Canadian Valley Baptist Church, Yukon – Sunday activities canceled

Canadian Valley Technology Center, Chickasha – Closed Monday

Church of Christ, Yukon – Sunday activities canceled

First Baptist Church, Kingfisher – Sunday activities canceled

First Baptist Church, Piedmont – Sunday activities canceled

Yukon Nazarene – Sunday activities canceled

Mustang Public Schools just now (6:45 p.m.) sent a robocall canceling classes, as has Yukon, Norman, Minco and Cashion. We will update you as we hear further.

 

 

Piedmont Shriners parade set for Nov. 22

India Shriners will bring their unique brand of entertainment and ceremony to a parade held in Piedmont Saturday, Nov. 22.

The fall ceremonial parade is part of Oklahoma City India Shrine’s 120th anniversary, 2014 Potentate John Lynch Jr. said. Chartered in 1894, India Shrine is one of 193 shrine temples in North America and Europe, Lynch said.

“We were here 13 years before statehood even, and we are very proud of our history and heritage,” Lynch said. “The complete name of our order is the ‘Ancient Arabic Order of the Nobles of the Mystic Shrine International’ – thus, we get the reference to our members as Nobles or Shriners.”

Shriners are men who have first become Masons, Lynch said. Masons’ organizations go back much further than Oklahoma City’s shrine, with the first Grand Lodge formed in 1717 in London.

“By the turn of the 20th Century, there were 79 Shrine Temples,” Lynch said. “While almost all of them were engaged in some sort of philanthropic work, it wasn’t until 1920 that a resolution to establish a hospital for children.”

Today, Shriners maintain 22 children’s hospitals in the United States, Canada and Mexico with an annual budget in 2014 of more than $638 million, Lynch said. Local Shriners help transport about 1,004 children from 37 Oklahoma counties to the hospital at a cost of about $200,000, the Potentate said.

Piedmont’s parade is one of about 20 held by India Shrine each year, Lynch said. Members of 33 active units – including a band, three wheelers, roadsters, clowns, motorcycles, scooters, dune buggies and more.

“Community parades are an important part of the Shrine, as they give all of us an opportunity to show the public what they are all about – having fun and helping children,” Lynch said.

The Nov. 22 parade will begin at 10 a.m. and will travel south on North Piedmont Road from Piedmont City Hall.

 

Technology Center kicks off $45 million campus reconstruction

By Traci Chapman

Canadian Valley Technology Center’s El Reno campus has seen a metamorphosis – from destruction to rebirth.

Last Thursday was a time to celebrate that renewal, center officials said. With a groundbreaking marking the start of construction attended by dignitaries, center officials, staff, students, residents and more, shovels touched dirt on a $45 million project that will end with a new campus along Route 66 in El Reno.

It was a big change of scene from June 1, 2013, the day after the widest-ever recorded tornado swept across the campus, demolishing all nine buildings on it. Although a small portion of one building remained, the devastation was deemed a total loss, Canadian Valley Technology Superintendent Dr. Greg Winters said. The EF-5, 2.6-mile wide tornado logged wind speeds as high as 296 mph, according to National Weather Service data.

Canadian Valley Technology Center Assistant Superintendent Bill Bradley, left, shares a laugh with Superintendent Dr. Greg Winters during a Nov. 6 ground breaking of the new $45 million El Reno campus. (Traci Chapman/Gazette)

The one gift in the storm was that no one was injured at the college, although 15 people were onsite with the tornado hit, Winters said. The last of the children in the school’s daycare facility had been picked up about an hour before, Oklahoma Secretary of State Chris Benge said.

“My, my how we have been tested – we’ve passed every test with the highest marks,” CVTC Assistant Superintendent Bill Bradley said. “In the face of adversity, our people stepped up to the plate and hit a home run every single time.” Read more →

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