The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK


April 3, 2013

Winning still beats being a lovable loser

The Chicago Cubs often are referred to as “lovable losers.” Their fans have waited since 1908 for a World Series title and prospects for the future don’t appear to be any more likely than past years in ending that string of futility.

Such long-standing failure can drive a sports program or team to its collective knees and turn its fans and supporters into jaded souls. Not everyone is satisfied to be a loser, and most don’t have the patience of Cubs fans.

But what about on the high school scene? It takes a special kind of fan/parent/coach to keep persevering in the face of repeated failure, not to mention the kids themselves. Maybe that’s what makes Kremlin-Hillsdale’s recent baseball championship in the Cherokee Strip Tournament so heartwarming.

Let’s be honest, the Broncs have been suffering across the board in most of their sports for the past few seasons. Their boys basketball and their football team had three wins total this past season, which was three more than the previous year. And most of the losses were blowouts. Championships, sadly, are rare commodities for the Broncs.

But that changed slightly when Kremlin-Hillsdale not only won the Cherokee Strip Tournament, but did so in improbable fashion, coming back from a 7-0 deficit against Cherokee to pull out an 8-7 win this past Saturday to claim the crown.

The win doesn’t erase all the hurt from past seasons in other sports, but it sure helps.

“That means a lot,” second-year head coach Terry Fettke told the Enid News & Eagle Wednesday about his team’s comeback. “They are willing to keep fighting ...”

Now, Kremlin-Hillsdale is not likely to win a state title and nobody is getting carried away with their tournament crown, but it says something that they have been resilient enough to keep fighting through losing. Of course, kids have a way of not internalizing things the way we adults do and don’t let themselves get weighed down by things in the past over which they had no control.

We saw something similar too this past football season in our area when Chisholm High School, after going a combined 1-19 in the previous two seasons,  posted a 5-5 record, its first non-losing season since going 5-5 in 2008.

Heading into last season, not many so-called experts gave Chisholm head football coach Joey Reinart much of a chance at anything more than another losing season, with his Longhorns expected to scrape bottom again.

“When you have put in as much work as we have ... when you have invested this much time, you expect to go up,” Reinart told the Enid News & Eagle prior to the 2012 season. “We are doing things the right way.”

Obviously that turned out to be more than just coach-speak.

It’s nice to see young athletes at schools like Kremlin-Hillsdale and Chisholm finally getting to experience some reward for their hard work. You can bear to be a lovable loser for only so long, unless you are a Chicago Cub.

“Attitude is so important,” Fettke said. “The important thing is they (the Kremlin-Hillsdale players) are believing in themselves.”

And that’s what it’s all about. Well, other than winning.

Ruthenberg is sports editor at the News & Eagle. Contact him at

Text Only
  • Christian Voitik Missed chances, controversial call end Majors' season

    For the second time in a little over 24 hours, the Enid Majors had a lead in the Connie Mack South Plains Regional Tournament, and for the second time they couldn’t hold it.
    On Wednesday, it ended their season.

    July 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • Minors fall in Alva

    The Enid Minors became the first of the South Plains Regional’s two co-hosts to be eliminated, spoiling a 5-0 lead to fall 9-7 to Texas Stix Black Wednesday in an elimination game in Alva.

    July 23, 2014

  • David Clyde Ex-MLBer goes from pitching phenom to Connie Mack coach

    David Clyde was a picture of contentment after his Houston Miracles shut out the Texas Stix Black of the Dallas area 4-0 in the first round of the Connie Mack South Plains Regional Tuesday at David Allen Memorial Ballpark.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Majors fall Majors stumble late, fall to regional losers' bracket

    Cherry Creek, Colo., broke out for six runs in the top of the seventh for a 7-3 come-from-behind victory over the Enid Majors in the first round of the Connie Mack South Plains Regional Tuesday at David Allen Memorial Ballpark.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bob Stoops Sooners, as usual, managing expectations

    High hopes are always attached to Oklahoma and this year is no different with the Sooners entering the 2014 season as a consensus pick to reach the first College Football Playoff.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Mike Gundy Former OSU line coach having impact on Texas staff

    It was quite possibly the biggest coaching coup of the offseason and Oklahoma State was at the wrong end of it – former Cowboy offensive line coach Joe Wickline joining the staff for Charlie Strong's Texas Longhorns.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Charlie Strong Texas’ Strong prefers not talking national title

    Charlie Strong riled up plenty of Texas fans during a statewide spring tour by saying the Longhorns wouldn’t be in the national championship game.
    The new coach toned down his honest assessment in future stops, then said Tuesday in his first appearance at Big 12 media days that he prefers not even talking about championships.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • A new ACC? New ACC settles into era of stability

    Welcome to the new Atlantic Coast Conference.
    It’s where a founding member is out, a fast-rising program is in, Notre Dame is there, too — sort of — and nobody else is leaving.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Devonte Fields TCU’s Fields investigated for alleged assault

    TCU suspended defensive end Devonte Fields on Tuesday pending the results of a police investigation into whether he punched a former girlfriend in the head and threatened her with a gun while shouting, “I should blast you!”

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Minors lose in first round

    Wren Perry and Garrett Scudder combined for a two-hitter as the D-Bats Gallegos of Dallas run-ruled the Enid Minors 8-0 in six innings in the first round of the South Plains Regional Tuesday at David Allen Memorial Ballpark.

    July 22, 2014

Click here for NASCAR headlines
Sports Photos

Enid News & Eagle sports photos from the month of February 2014. Enjoy all the ENE photos with full access at