2011 Texas Better Newspaper Contest - Sports Coverage
Monday, 20 June 2011 13:17

Division 2
Dailies 7,000 to 99,999
1. Victoria Advocate, Most entries in this category are all about football so it is difficult to judge a full week of coverage. Still, your community level briefs are better than most. Design - top left Inside box, black, could use larger teaser words. It would work.
2. Laredo Morning Times, Contest rules - seems like some byline stories were crossed out. Texas football is king so kudos for placing a volleyball story top of page. Design makes good use of white space. Strong headlines. Strong effort, great range of sports.
3. The Kerrville Daily Times, Lot of space used to recap “best moments’ of a season. Was it worth it? It does help with “range of coverage” points. “Hot Shots” is a hot feature. Should you tease a website photo gallery on this page? I like the big headlines. Strong package throughout.
4. The Daily Sentinel, Nacogdoches, Range of coverage is great with outdoors & kids & men and & women. Headline style is one of the best in category. Text leads are great - snappy & get readers involved. Photos are good - can’t say as good as some other papers. Tough competition in category!

Division 3
Dailies Less Than 7,000
1. Plainview Daily Herald, Skillful writing utilizing many short sentences for emphasis. Exceptional range of coverage.
2. The Herald Banner, Greenville, Meticulous design extends well beyond the section page.
3. San Marcos Daily Record, Many examples of clever writing in a section overflowing with strong coverage. Avoid color headlines.
4. Brownwood Bulletin, Exceptional advance game stories. Beautifully designed pages.

Division 4
Semiweeklies 4,001 or More
1. Wise County Messenger, Decatur, Overuse of bold 6-column headlines. Photos were exceptional. Stories provided insight and relevance of wins and losses.
2. Hood County News, Granbury, Well-crafted stories with short, punchy leads are a pleasure to read.
3. The Bastrop Advertiser, Attractive pages, good use of color. Stories combine good detail with keen analysis.
4. The Williamson County Sun, Georgetown, Outstanding design demonstrates careful planning. One swimmer photo carried no identification in cutline.

Division 5
Semiweeklies 4,000 or Less
1. Lampasas Dispatch Record, Exceptional writing gives readers a good understanding of the games!
2. Kilgore News Herald, Writers and headline writers should pay more attention to subject-verb agreement: “Sabine sweep Eagles”; “...basketball are mowing down ...”
3. Lamesa Press Reporter, Well-written stories provide readers with much more than just a play-by-play report.
4. The Terrell Tribune, Well-crafted pages. Page 6B was missing!

Division 6
Large Weeklies
1. Fredericksburg Standard-Radio Post, You devote exceptional space to provide coverage of a wide range of sports activities. Excellent emotion displayed in many of your images. Readers benefit from your professionalism.
2. Katy Times, Clean appearance to well-designed pages. Headlines carry impact.
3. Hays Free Press, Kyle/Buda, Very clean and orderly appearance to your pages.
4. The Rockdale Reporter, Pay more attention to possessives and collective nouns.

Division 7
Medium-Large Weeklies
1. Hill Country Community Journal, Kerrville, The Journal places an extraordinary emphasis on sports and does it extremely well. Readers should feel fortunate to have both quality and quantity.
2. Westlake Picayune, Austin, Readers could not ask for more complete and competent sports coverage.
3. Lake Travis View, Austin, Many outstanding images enabled this entry to stand out among other publications judged.
4. The River Cities Sunday Tribune, Marble Falls, Impressive variety of stories. Your readers are treated to more than just play-by-play reports.

Division 8
Medium Weeklies
1. Glen Rose Reporter, Photos emphasizing emotions gave impact to your pages.
2. The Springtown Epigraph, Hooray for the short, snappy leads. They make stories more interesting.
3. Pilot Point Post-Signal, Good emphasis on upcoming games rather than detailed rehashing of past games.
4. Iowa Park Leader, Effective blend of quotes and play-by-play in game stories. Exemplary use of strong photos.

Division 9
Small-Medium Weeklies
1. The Hometown Press, Winnie, Avoid illustrations that block type (pp. 1, 4-15).
2. The Farmersville Times, No comments by judge.
3. Sachse News - no comments by judge.
4. The Albany News, Game stories show good mix of play-by-play and quotes.

Division 10
Small Weeklies
1. Murphy Monitor, Exceptionally well-written football stories. Many strong photos, but avoid filling space with many lackluster images.
2. Pearland Journal,  Exceptional writing elevated this entry.
3. Pflugerville Pflag, Good mix of game coverage, news and opinion plus features.
4. Crowley Star, Well-written stories.