Anyone can print the final score of a hockey game (Vancouver
3, Colorado 1) but it takes detail and creative language to win
The trick to writing
sports is not just to report the scores but to try to tell what
happened - readers want to meet the players that made it happen
and have a front row seat to the game's action.
As a student reporter you must remember:
Focus on the important
plays of the game or a key player, and build your story around
Michael Jordan scored 35 points to help the Chicago Bulls
clobber the New York Knicks by a score of 105-73.
When reporting in sports you don't have to put in every play,
just the important ones that made a difference.
Joe Carter's two-run homer in the seventh inning led the
Toronto Blue Jays to a 6-4 win over the Milwaukee Brewers.
Everyone would like to know exactly what happened in the game
but they don't need to hear every play or every detail. An example
of overusing information on an unimportant play would be like
Fred Smith came up to bat in the second inning, and swung
strikes on the first two pitches. He fouled off on the next pitch,
and then popped one up into left field. Gonzales, the left fielder,
caught it in the air for the first out.
Lively quotes from
the players or managers can give your story a boost.
"It's lack of faith that makes people afraid of meeting
challenges," explained Muhammad Ali"and I believed
Sports don't always happen on the playing field, so if you
describe the crowd's mood, size, or the effect they had on the
game, it helps keep your readers interested.
A heavy helping of octopi was heaved onto the ice at game's
end by the 12,400 angry hockey fans in attendance.
Your story doesn't even have to be about a game. It could
be player profiles
or about teams preparing for a new season or a tournament - whatever
is happening that may be interesting.
Professional sports aren't the only things happening, either.
Amateur teams in competition
can be just as exciting as the top of the line' athletes.
Sports happening in schools or in communities are always around
to report. These are the kinds of stories that people enjoy reading
because they're about the local athletes that people may meet
everyday. It makes readers proud of their achievements.
In either men's or women's events, sports news is what matters.
Take some 1996 Olympic medalists from Canada as examples. Donovan
Bailey won gold with a 9.84 second Olympic record run in the
men's 100 metre sprint. Marnie McBean and Kathleen Heddle excelled
in rowing gold for Canada in the Women's Double Sculls.
Make sure you know
exactly what the players or athletes have accomplished, so your
story has the correct details.