First place: Richard Walker, The Gaston Gazette
Follow Richard on Twitter @JRWalk22
Each entry is strong. The profile of the basketball player who fought back from hip surgery reveals the life lessons taught by sports. The 50-year mystery of the woman placing flowers on a star athlete’s grave is a sure talker in the town. The 50-year look-back at breaking the color barrier in Legion baseball is well-reported and the timeline adds nicely to the package.
Second place: Chris Singleton, Houma Today
Follow Chris on Twitter @courierchris
It’s refreshing to see a sports writer enter two news stories: football field conditions and a melee after a basketball game. These are the types of issues too often overlooked in sports sections. The feature entry on the retiring coach also was well-reported.
Third place: James Bennett, The Daily Herald
Good depth in reporting on pro teams in coverage area and nice change of pace in coverage to write about the theater of the absurd: pro wrestling.