November 28, 2013

When the Game Didn't Count

by Heath Hunziker

Confusion, shock and heartbreak.

Those are a few of the emotions that my father, Gary Hunziker, recalled as he looked over the player names and scoring totals penciled on pages 6 and 7 of the old, tattered 1963-64 Memphis High School basketball scorebook. His Scotland County Twentieth Century History class had found the book in an old trophy case last spring. Having played for the Kahoka Indians in 1963-64, my father immediately thought back to one of the most memorable games he experienced that 27-3 season, if not in his high school career. Even though no points appear next to his name in the scorebook, my father has shared his memories of that day and game with my brothers and me as we grew up. Unfortunately, the story always ended in confusion. So you can imagine how thrilled he was when one of his students approached him last April with a stack of scorebooks from that era. As he set aside all but the 1963-64 book, he thought possibly the pages would help answer some questions about that day, or worse, create more. Dad glanced over the weathered pages and began to tell his students about the once heated rivalry of Memphis and Kahoka High schools and why of all games, he remembered this one most.

The rivalry between Memphis and Kahoka schools has spanned generations but many would debate that the rivalry was the strongest in the 1960's. Both schools were highly competitive in all their athletic programs, but basketball was the main attraction in both communities. Together, the schools had won their share of Mississippi Valley conference championships in past seasons, and this conference season both were expected to be competitive as well. In 1963-64, Memphis and Coach Joe Branham had a strong starting line-up, which included seniors Thomas Kirchner, Rob Moore, Phillip Moss, Ralph Carver and Charles King. Many considered Coach Neil Knight's Kahoka team to be balanced from top to bottom, led by seniors Sam Bogener, Doug McCulloch, Elmer Boatman, and juniors Steve Sherwood and Ron Fry.

The basketball contest between Kahoka and Memphis followed Kahoka's championship run in the LaBelle tournament a week earlier, so Kahoka was confident going into Memphis. The Tigers had beaten their first opponent Wyaconda by nearly fifty points a week before, so both communities expected a hard-fought game. In those days, each Mississippi Valley school played each other twice so not only was each game important but each team wanted to prove early in the season who was best prepared. What both teams didn't suspect, was neither would be prepared for what happened that day.





The game was fast paced from the tip-off as both teams were athletic and played an up-tempo style of basketball. Center Charles King and guard Rob Moore helped their Memphis Tigers take control of the game early, scoring 16 of the team's 24 total first quarter points. Kahoka's center Sam Bogener and forward Doug McCulloch combined for 16 of Kahoka's 18 total points. The cadence of both teams didn't let up in the second quarter. With Sam Bogener in foul trouble, Kahoka's starting guard Steve Sherwood scored 6 points while forward Elmer Boatman tallied 9 points. Again, King and Moore led the Memphis Tigers in the second quarter scoring column and the Tigers walked into their locker room feeling confident, up 48-41 at halftime.

As my father began to talk to his students about the events of the second half, he gazed down to the date penciled in the upper right corner of the score sheet and then explained that not only was this no ordinary game, more importantly, it was no ordinary day. In fact, everyone had been confused since 12:30 p.m., which carried over into the evening events. The date in the book read November 22, 1963.

The game is memorable because around the same time that my father and his Kahoka teammates were arriving by bus in Memphis to prepare for the junior varsity and varsity games that evening, the Presidential plane, Air Force One, was also arriving at Andrews Air Force Base near Washington D.C. The aircraft had landed carrying both newly sworn in President Lyndon B. Johnson and the body of President John F. Kennedy who had been shot and killed earlier that day as his uncovered limousine drove through Dealey Plaza in downtown Dallas, Texas.

The whole world was shocked that President Kennedy had been killed. Anybody living at that time could probably tell you exactly where he or she was when they first heard the tragic news that the President was dead, the victim of an assassin's bullet. Most high school students at the time remember being shaken, saddened, angry and very much confused as to why anyone would want to kill the President of the United States. The whole afternoon was clouded in uncertainty, as teachers and students waited for information and answers to questions such as, "Who really shot Kennedy? Was there a conspiracy to kill the president?" It all seemed so surreal. For many communities, evening school events were still to take place, including a high school basketball game to be played in Memphis against Kahoka.

Prior to a big game, an electric atmosphere usually consumes the crowd. Players and coaches are normally overcome with nerves and excitement as they anticipate taking the court for warm-ups. "This evening," Rob Moore recalls, "everyone seemed to be in a trance - preoccupied." My father remembers the twenty-five mile bus ride as "a very quiet one" and when normally the fans would be engaged in the game, that night everyone's thoughts were with the Kennedy family and the future of America.

As confusion still surrounded the events earlier that day in Dallas, confusion would also play a significant role in the outcome of a basketball game between the two bordering counties.

Everyone has their own tale about the second half of the game.

Kahoka's coach Neil Knight said it best, "You could pull ten people from the stands that night and each one would tell you something different."

At one point in the game, most likely at the end of the third quarter, both teams went to their benches as Memphis held a 2-point lead.

The scorebook keepers for both teams were underclassmen.

Pat McLaughlin, who kept the Kahoka book said, "I don't remember why they had me on the book that night. Normally, Lawrence Brotherton managed our scorebook."

Although Pat doesn't remember the incident, others do. The found scorebook also provided answers. Since Memphis was the home team, their scorebook was the official book. Pat's quarter totals matched the scoreboard totals but the Memphis book did not. Upon review, Pat noticed that 4 points were given to Kahoka in the official Memphis book when it should have been given to Memphis. Because there was a discrepancy in scores, the officials were notified. Since the Memphis book was the official book, the officials directed the scoreboard operator to adjust the score to match it, even though incorrect. Furthermore, the Kahoka book would be the official book the last quarter.

A manageable 2-point Memphis lead was changed to a 6-point deficit. An eight point swing. Both teams battled in the fourth quarter but when the final buzzer sounded, the score was 85-84, Kahoka.

Did the events in Dallas contribute to the error, or was an honest mistake made during a fast paced game? Who knows? It doesn't matter.

Ultimately the change to the score may have changed the outcome of the game. Who won the game? Why was the score changed? Who should have won? You would expect anger amongst the home crowd in protest and celebration amongst the Kahoka fans that made the trip to the game. Neither, which many of the players from both teams remembered, happened.

Days following the game, Memphis would file an appeal to have the game thrown out due to the adjustment made between the scorebook and scoreboard. A tape of the game also accompanied the appeal. The ruling would take months, but eventually the Missouri State High School Activities Association (MSHSAA) would conclude that the game be ruled "No Contest". This is confirmed in the Memphis scorebook where both pages have a large "X" penciled across them and the words "No Contest" written at the top. A victory would not be given to either team, nor would a loss. The game vanished from both team's record, as though it was never played.

I share this story because growing up my father spoke of what he referred to as the "JFK" game.

He remembered it not only because of the controversy that ensued at the scorer's table, but most importantly he remembers it because of the day it shared with history. November 22, 2013 marked the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, one of the most momentous and analyzed moments in American history. Even half a century later, questions persist.

My father told his students that although the game between rival schools was hard fought, it only seemed fitting that no team won on that day. Where a game should have mattered most, it mattered least. It's hard to imagine anyone would want to celebrate a victory on one of the worst days in the history of the United States. An error may have changed the outcome of a basketball game, but the events in Dallas changed America.

Lady Tigers Drop Two of Three at Schuyler Tourney

 

Maddie Brassfield slides into second base.

Maddie Brassfield slides into second base.

After dropping two of three games at the Schuyler County Tournament on Saturday, the Scotland County softball program returned from Lancaster under the .500 mark on the season with a 7-8 record.

SCR-I got off to a  horrible start Saturday morning. After leaving the bases loaded in the top of the first, Knox County jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the bottom of the frame, taking advantage of a pair of SCR-I errors as well as a home run.

Chelsea Wood singled and Stevi See walked with two outs in the third inning before Ashleigh Creek cracked a triple to trim the deficit to 5-2.

Another two-out rally in the sixth inning made the final score 5-3. Kaylyn Anders singled and scored when Abby Blessing reached on an error.

Creek pitched six innings, allowing just one earned run on seven hits and a walk while striking out five.

Wood went 2-3 with a walk and a run scored. Creek was 1-2 with two RBIs.

In game two, freshman Kaitlin McMinn got her first varsity pitching victory as SCR-I rallied for a 9-5 win over Brashear.

SCR-I fell behind 4-0 before Wood and See singled in the third and scored on a two-run hit by Creek.

The fifth inning put SCR-I over the top as Abi Feeney reached on an error and scored on a double by Wood. Creek added an RBI triple before Maddie Brassfield was hit by a pitch and scored on a base hit by Abby Blessing to make the score 6-5.

Creek took over in relief and notched the save with two scoreless innings of work.

Abby Blessing fires in a throw from center field.

Abby Blessing fires in a throw from center field.

SCR-I tacked on three more runs in sixth. Wood and See singled in front of a three-run homer by Creek to make the final score 9-5.

McMinn allowed two earned runs in four innings of work on four hits and three walks.

Creek struck out four in two innings of relief. She was 3-4 at the plate with six RBI and finished a single short of the cycle after hitting a double, triple and homer.

Wood was 3-4 and See went 2-4 as SCR-I finished with 10 hits after a slow start.

The consolation game slipped away from Scotland County as the host team broke a 2-2 tie in the fifth inning en route to the 5-4 win.

Schuyler County took a 2-0 lead in the second inning on an SCR-I error.

Abi Feeney singled and came in to score when Wood reached on an error to trim the deficit to 2-1.

Creek singled in the fourth inning and courtesy runner Hailey Darcy stole second base and came in to score when Anders reached on an error.

In the sixth, Creek smacked her second homer of the day to trim the lead to 5-3.

Katie Feeney squeezes a throw at first base on the bunt attempt.

Katie Feeney squeezes a throw at first base on the bunt attempt.

Julie Long reached on an error to start the seventh and pinch runner Khloe Hamlin stole second before scoring when Abi Feeney reached on an error. Wood doubled but SCR-I stranded the winning run at second base as the Rams held on for the 5-3 win.

Creek took the loss, despite not allowing an earned run. She held Schuyler County to five hits and three walks while striking out seven.

Lady Tigers Knock Off Novinger 15-1

abi-novinger

After a slow start Monday night, the Scotland County softball team came on strong late to close out Novinger 15-1 in five innings of play in Memphis.

Abi Feeney was hit by a pitch to lead off the game and stole second base. She scored on an RBI single to give SCR-I a 1-0 lead.

Stevi See reached on an error and scored on an RBI ground out by Creek in the third to extend the lead to 2-0.

Novinger trimmed the deficit to 2-1 in the top of the fourth inning when a walk  led to a run on a wild pitch.

But SCR-I closed the door on any rally with a huge fourth inning that saw the Lady Tigers send 17 batters to the plate en route to scoring 13 runs.

Abby Blessing and Katie Feeney had RBI singles to start the rally before Abi Feeney delivered an RBI triple. Chelsea Wood followed with a double  before Creek drove in another run with a two-bagger. See also contributed an RBI single during the onslaught.

Creek finished off the five-inning no-hitter with a one-two-three inning to record the victory. The junior allowed one run on no hits and three walks while striking out 11.

SCR-I improved to 8-8 on the season with the win.

Rams Outlast Lady Tigers 2-1 In Defensive Battle

Shortstop Abi Feeney makes a throw to first from her knees after one of her several nice defensive plays at Lancaster.

Shortstop Abi Feeney makes a throw to first from her knees after one of her several nice defensive plays at Lancaster.

Tuesday night saw an old-fashioned pitching duel in Lancaster backed up with plenty of defensive gems. Unfortunately for the Lady Tigers, Schuyler County was the last one standing in the 2-1 defeat.

Scotland County took a 1-0 lead in the top of the first. Abi Feeney led off with a walk. With two outs, she was able to score all the way from first base when Ashleigh Creek reached on an error on an errant throw from third base that got by the first baseman.

Schuyler County came right back in the bottom of the frame. The Rams led off the inning with a blooper that landed and died between the pitcher and home plate for an infield single. After a wild pitch and a sacrifice bunt, Megan Haley delivered an RBI ground out to knot the score at 1-0.

After that point, pitchers Ashleigh Creek and Dystine Priebe locked horns, putting up zeros on the scoreboard.

Ashleigh Creek fields a bunt and fires to Katie Feeney at first base to record the out.

Ashleigh Creek fields a bunt and fires to Katie Feeney at first base to record the out.

SCR-I managed a base runner each inning until the sixth, but was unable to advance anyone past first base. Julie Long singled in the second, but was stranded. Stevi See and Abby Blessing walked in the third and fourth innings before Abi Feeney got a base hit in the fifth, but Priebe worked out of the jams, in large part thanks to nine strikeouts.

Her defense helped out a bit, as center fielder Brooke Whitton made a fine running grab in deep center field to rob Creek of extra bases in the third and Haley made a nice catch to rob Chelsea Wood of a hit in the fifth.

Creek matched the zeroes, albeit with a little more effort, struggling a bit with wild pitches that had the Lady Rams with runners in scoring position every inning.

Priebe singled and moved to second on a wild pitch in the second inning. Abi Feeney ended the threat with a diving grab on a line between short and third base.

The senior shortstop made back-to-back put outs in the third to leave a runner at third base. Maddie Brassfield then made a defensive gem at first base to end the threat in the fourth.

Schuyler County finally broke through for the winning run in the fifth inning. A leadoff single followed by a passed ball and a wild pitch allowed the Rams to score on a sacrifice fly.

Long smacked a one-out single in the seventh, her second hit of the contest, but Priebe closed out the rally to secure the 2-1 win for Schuyler County.

Scotland County fell to 6-5 on the season and 4-3 in the Lewis & Clark Conference.

Creek pitched six innings and allowed two runs, one earned on five hits and no walks while striking out three.

Priebe held SCR-I to just three hits and three walks over seven innings, surrendering just the one unearned run.

Rutledge School Building Sold

rutledge-web

The Village of Rutledge sold the school to the Restoration Society for $1.00 on Tuesday, September 20th at 12:00 p.m.  Those at the closing were Society members L to R Lyle Otte, Reva Hustead, Charlene Montgomery, Gwen Ludwick, Bob Hunolt, Dorothy Hunolt, Elaine Forrester, Betty Lodewegan, Lynn McClamroch,  (Keith Zimmerman and Carol McCabe from the Village) and Leon Trueblood.

Grand Hall Singspiration in Memphis

by-grace-ministry-web

The Rabers, part of the By Grace Ministry, will be hosting a Grand Hall Singspiration in Memphis at the Grand Hall, across from the BP Station, 418 E. Grand, on Sunday, October 2nd at 7:15 p.m.  They are also hosting a Men of Valor men’s meeting on Monday, October 3rd at 7:15 p.m.  Everyone is welcome and admission is a free will offering.  For more information about the By Grace Ministry, visit www.bygraceministry.com.

Area Children Enjoy Games at Annual Rutledge Fall Festival

The annual Rutledge Fall Festival was held Saturday, September 17th and several area children enjoyed participating in various games.  Karl DeMarce emceed the games this year.

Balloon Toss winners in the six to eight division included Trevor and Evan Tague (1st), Kadence Burnett (2nd), and Craig Pflum and Cole Mazziotti and Nina Knepp (tied for 3rd).  In the nine and over division winners were Owen and Lucas Durflinger (1st), Hunter Holt and Aden Aldridge (2nd), and Aaron McDaniel and Hugh Baker (3rd).

Shoe Kick winners in the five and under division were Natalie Tague (1st), Travis Tague (2nd), and Ethan Pflum (3rd).  In the six to eight division winners were Evan Tague (1st), Cole Mazziotti (2nd), and Nina Knepp, Trevor Tague and Cole Pflum (3rd).  In the nine and over division winners were Owen Triplett (1st), Riley Small (2nd), and Lucas Durflinger (3rd).

Running Race winners in the five and under division were Landon Davis (1st), Kinze Mallett and Travis Tague (2nd), and Natalie Tague (3rd).  In the six to eight division winners were Kaden See (1st), Cole Mazziotti (2nd), and Evan Tague and Nina Knepp (3rd).  In the nine and over division winners were Owen Triplett (1st), Hunter Holt (2nd), and Lucas Durflinger (3rd).

Egg Race winners in the five and under girls’ division were Kenzie Mallett (1st), Nora Guthrie (2nd), and Natalie Tague (3rd).  In the boys’ division winners were Travis Tague (1st), James Guthrie (2nd), and Clay White (3rd).  In the six to eight girls’ division, winners were Natalie Howerton (1st), Kayla Pflum (2nd), and Tegan Mallett (3rd).  Boys’ division winners were Trevor Tague (1st), Kadence Burnett (2nd), and Craig Pflum (3rd).  In the nine and over division, winners were Braydon Tietjens (1st), Aden Aldridge (2nd), and Owen Triplett and Lucas Durflinger (3rd).

Afternoon games included a Kiddie Tractor Pull, Tug-of-War Race and the Shirley Chancellor Memorial Hot Cookie Race.

SCR-I School Menus

Breakfast

Thursday, Sept. 29 – Breakfast Burrito, Choice of Cereal, Toast/Jelly, Orange Wedge/Grapes, Juice/Milk

Friday, September 30 – Sausage/Gravy Biscuits, Choice of Cereal, Blueberry Muffin, Banana, Juice/Milk

Monday, October 3 – Waffles, Choice of Cereal, Cinnamon Biscuit, Apple Wedges, Juice/Milk

Tuesday, October 4 –Cinnamon Rolls, Choice of Cereal, Toast/Jelly, Orange Half, Juice/Milk

Wednesday, October 5 – Ham/Cheese/Croissant, Choice of Cereal, Toast/Jelly, Fruit Medley, Juice/Milk

Thursday, October 6 – Breakfast Burrito, Choice of Cereal, Toast/Jelly, Orange Wedge/Grapes, Juice/Milk

Lunch

Thursday, Sept. 29 – Spaghetti/Meat Sauce, Chicken Wrap, Hamburger Bar, Green Beans, Garlic Bread, Sliced Peaches, Fresh Fruit

Friday, September 30 – Sack Lunch Today – HOMECOMING

Monday, October 3 – Chicken Ala King/Biscuit, Juicy Burger/Bun, 5th/6th Grade Chef Salad, Onion Rings, Peas, Mandarin Orange Slices, Fresh Fruit

Tuesday, October 4 – Cheeseburger/Bun, Tenderloin/Bun, 5th/6th Grade Taco Bar, Oven Ready Fries, Tomato Slices and Pickles, Applesauce, Fresh Fruit

Wednesday, October 5 –Country Fried Steak, Chicken Alfredo, 5th/6th Grade Potato Bar, Whipped Potatoes/Gravy, Broccoli/Cheese Sauce, Dinner Roll, Sliced Pears

Thursday, October 6 – Beef ‘N’ Tator Bake, Chicken Wrap, Hamburger Bar, Green Beans, Dinner Roll, Pineapple Tidbits, Fresh Fruit

Scotland County Senior Nutrition Center

MENU

Thursday, Sept. 29 – BBQ or Plain Pork/Bun, French Fries, Cauliflower Blend Veggies, Mandarin Oranges, Cake

Friday, September 30 – Hot Beef Sandwich, Mashed Potatoes/Gravy, Coleslaw, Buttered Carrots, Pudding

Monday, October 3 – Juicy Burger/Bun, French Fries, Mixed Vegetables, Cottage Cheese, Peaches

Tuesday, October 4 – Roast Pork/Stuffing/Gravy, Sauerkraut, Green Beans, Slice Bread, Cake

Wednesday, October 5 – Chicken Strips, Mashed Potatoes/Gravy, Buttered Carrots, Hot Roll, Fruit Salad

Thursday, October 6 – Meatloaf, Macaroni Salad, Buttered Broccoli, Applesauce, Bread, Glazed Donut

ACTIVITIES

Thursday, Sept. 29 – Card Party at 5:00 p.m.

Thursday, October 6 – Card Party at 5:00 p.m.

Special 100-Year Homecoming Services This Weekend at First Christian Church

The Memphis First Christian Church will be hosting Homecoming Services to celebrate the completion of the current church building (located on corner of Jones and Main Streets) which was completed in 1916.  The celebration will take place this weekend –  September 30- October 1-2, 2016.

Phillip Gore and Tim Hawkins former ministers of the Memphis First Christian Church will be the speakers for the Sunday, October 2, morning worship service, and former Memphis resident Terry Rush will speak at the closing service on Sunday afternoon.  Following the morning service, there will be a luncheon served.

There will also be services on Friday, September 30, beginning at 7:00 with a “Linger Longer” fellowship time after the service.  On Saturday, October 1, there will be a barbecue at 5:00 with services beginning at 6:30.

Special music for the services will be provided by the Gateway Singers and Paul Burton and Mercy’s Bridge Band, a country gospel group.  The Planning Committee for the Church Homecoming Celebration will share historical information about First Christian Church as part of the three special services.

Members of the community are cordially invited to attend all of the services and meals for the celebration.

Mayor Reckenberg Proclaims Constitution Week, Sept. 17 – 23, 2016 in Memphis

Memphis Mayor William Reckenberg was joined by members of the Jauflione Chapter of the NSDAR to sign a proclamation declaring Constitution Week in Memphis.

Memphis Mayor William Reckenberg was joined by members of the Jauflione Chapter of the NSDAR to sign a proclamation declaring Constitution Week in Memphis.

On Friday, September 23, 2016, Mayor William Reckenberg signed and issued a proclamation announcing September 17 through 23, 2016 to be Constitution Week in Memphis, and asks our citizens to reaffirm the ideals the Framers of the Constitution had in 1787.

The Proclamation reads as follows:

Whereas, September 17, 2016 marks the two hundred and twenty-ninth anniversary of the drafting of the Constitution of the United States of America by the Constitutional Convention; and

Whereas, it is fitting and proper to officially recognize this magnificent document and the anniversary of its creation; and

Whereas, it is fitting and proper to officially recognize the patriotic celebrations which will commemorate the occasion; and

Whereas, public law 915 guarantees the issuing of a proclamation each year by the President of the United States of America designation September 17 through 23 as Constitution Week;

NOW THEREFORE, I, William Reckenberg, by virtue of the authority vested in me as Mayor of the City of Memphis in the County of Scotland do hereby proclaim September 17 through 23, 2016 as CONSTITUTION WEEK and ask our citizens to reaffirm the ideals the Framers of the Constitution had in 1787 by vigilantly protecting the freedoms guaranteed to us through this guardian of our liberties, remembering that lost rights may never be regained.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of Memphis to be affixed this twenty-third day of September in the year of our Lord two thousand sixteen.

The United States Constitution stands as a testament to the tenacity of Americans throughout history to maintain their liberties and freedoms and to ensure those unalienable rights to every American.

In 1955 the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) petitioned the Federal Government to dedicate September 17-23 as Constitution Week.  Congress adopted the resolution and on August 2, 1956, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed it into Public Law 915.  DAR Chapters have been observing Constitution Week various ways since then.  The local Chapter, Jauflione, places a display in a store window to remind the public of the Constitution and its significance to our way of life.  The city Mayor also issues a proclamation declaring Constitution Week.  This is an annual reminder of the inalienable rights the Constitution affords all Americans.

The aims of the celebration are to:  (1) Emphasize citizen’s responsibilities for protecting and defending the Constitution, (2) Inform people that the Constitution is the basis for American’s great heritage and the foundation for our way of life and (3) To encourage the study of the historical events which led to the framing of the Constitution in September 1787.

Written in 1787, the Constitution was signed September 17th.  But it wasn’t until 1788 that it was ratified by the necessary nine states.

The Constitution is a living document, being amended 27 times.  Of the written national constitutions, the U.S. Constitution is the oldest and shortest.

Jauflione Chapter, NSDAR helps keep alive the memory of the men and women who secured the Nation’s independence, whose bravery and sacrifice made possible the liberties Americans enjoy today.

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