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At the Mike: Oct. 19
Election night approaching fast as is, dare I say, college
Mike - At the Mike

The November election is just a few weeks away. Generally, in odd numbered years, that doesn’t spark too much interest. Especially in the non-presidential year when there isn’t a US senate seat up for election.
But this year in Great Bend, the General Election is chalk full of fun. There is a 3-way race for mayor. Of the four wards in Great Bend for city council, three of them have contested races. Two have three candidates running.
This was all in place even before the whole Chief Cliff Couch incident that sent the town into a frenzy.
So make sure you vote. That way you can feel entitled to complain about things.
All in all, November 7 should be an interesting night in Great Bend.

Prep Thoughts – Part I
Coaches like to say, ‘oh man, we have the toughest regional or district around’. In the case of the Great Bend cross country team, it may just be correct. This much is for sure, of the four regionals being run at the 5A level this weekend, two have possibly the eight best boys teams in the state. One of those is the Bishop Carroll Regional at Lake Afton.
Maize South, Bishop Carroll and Maize will join Great Bend for a battle for three teams spots at the state meet the following week.
On the girls’ side, Maize, Maize South, Liberal and Bishop Carroll along with Great Bend will all battle for those three team spots.
My only question is how did Wichita Heights manage to escape the region and go to Newton while Great Bend got put with the schools in the Wichita area? Because let me tell you, Coach Lyles Lashley would be lovin’ him some Newton Regional right about now.

Prep Thoughts – Part II
In what turned out to be a limited number of games, the predictions for At the Mike were 4-1 with the season total at 39-11.
The lone miss was Great Bend in a game the Panthers probably should have won. That makes two of those so far this year and it may just cost them a home playoff game. Or not. That is to be determined Friday. The worst case for GBHS is ninth.
Now’s it on to Garden City. Garden has lost just once this year. But keep this in mind – both Great Bend and Garden lost to Northwest. Great Bend lost in overtime to Hays, Garden beat Hays 7-3. Great Bend lost 23-21 to Liberal in the final seconds, Garden beat Liberal, 28-27. This game will most likely be a close one, but Garden has a slight edge being at home.
Hoisington and Larned do battle in Hoisington. This should be a good one. Hoisington is playing very good football right now. Larned should be healthy again. I take the Cards in a close one – probably about a touchdown. If you don’t want to make the trip to Garden City and want to watch a good football game, I suggest a trip to Hoisington for this battle.
Another interesting game in the area will be Macksville’s trip to Attica-Argonia. The Mustangs need a win in this one to keep playoffs hopes alive. I think they get the win in an upset.
Central Plains will easily beat St. John, Little River will defeat Ellinwood and South Barber will take care of Stafford.

Former Barton
Athlete/Coach update
So we are not far from this portion of At the Mike being the Ray Bechard update. The quick update, KU volleyball is 16-3 overall, 5-1 in the Big 12 and ranked No. 11.
Last week, Kansas, then ranked No. 9, battled No. 5 Texas for the lead in the Big 12. Kansas won the first set 25-21, lost the second 27-25 then won the third, 25-18. Texas rolled in the fourth set 25-10 and won 18-16 in the fifth set to keep the Jayhawks from the conference lead.
Still not halfway through the conference slate, there is a lot of volleyball left in the season. But a Nov. 15 trip to Austin, I’m sure, is circled on the Jayhawk calendar.

And Finally
Age is just a number. I realize that – to an extent. I always figured if my age wasn’t yet a speeding ticket, I was young.
Shoot, now on interstate you can go like 75 and not get a ticket. I’m still 25 years from that number. So, yes, I am still young.
But sometimes my body tells me things my mind can’t always alter. Like hurting your foot while officiating a football game. A game that had me running as if I was being punished and was running extra sprints for being late or missing practice.
Other times you realize you are getting older is when your daughter starts talking about the career she wants to pursue in college. Or when she says ‘Oh yeah, I need to sign up for senior day at Barton.’
Tuesday night we had our parent/teacher conference at GBHS. Katelyn’s advisory teacher, Brian Hutchinson, spent much of the time talking about time beyond high school.
I still struggle to see her beyond like third grade. I still want to peel the skin off her baked potato. I still want to cut her steak for her so she doesn’t cut herself. I still want to buy her stuffed animals for presents.
I am adjusting. I realize I am not the first father to resist their daughter growing up. But none of those other fathers were me, so I don’t care.
I did have to smile the other day as Katelyn portrayed one of those ‘I’m getting old’ moments for herself. Our guinea pigs from the ‘immaculate conception’ at our house just turned a year old in the past couple of weeks. I know this because Facebook told me so.
In looking at the pictures Katelyn commented on how cute they were when they were tiny. How she wished they would stop getting bigger.
I just nodded my head and smiled.

Mike Marzolf is a guest columnist for the Great Bend Tribune and his views don’t necessarily reflect those of the paper. He can be reached at