As I start this column I would like to correct a mistake in last week’s column about Don Clausen. It was 1958 that Don pitched his last game for the Merchants, not 1951. It was the last game I played with the Merchants as well.
I have said many times the most fun part of writing these columns is writing about former Warriors I have only heard about but never had the privilege of watching compete. A 1980 graduate, Sam Davis, is one of them.
I have been told over and over how much I would have enjoyed observing Sam play, or, even more, how I would have enjoyed coaching him. After having the chance to interview Sam, I know I really would have liked coaching him.
Sam played both football and basketball all four years while a Warrior. When I asked him which sport was his favorite, he must have known he had to say football.
He started his Warrior football career on the freshman team playing for coach Dale Thomas. He has great respect for Dale for the impact he had on his life as both a football coach and a basketball coach and for the positive influence he had off the field.
When I asked Sam about his favorite memory from his Warrior days, it did not take him long to respond. It was during his junior year playing football under coach Jim Costello. Del Norte was playing Eureka and it was late in the fourth quarter. The Warriors were trailing and faced a fourth down with 22 yards to go, and Sam made a great catch in the end zone to give Del Norte a 13-7 victory over the Loggers.
While Sam was excellent on the gridiron, he was also outstanding on the basketball court. During his senior year he was voted by his teammates as the Most Inspirational Player and was also selected to play in the all-star basketball game for seniors at the College of the Redwoods in Eureka. He said this was a great experience, having the opportunity to play with those outstanding competitors from the league that he had always played against.
Sam is married to Brooke and has two great kids. Brooke continues to serve our youth as the principal of Mary Peacock Elementary School. Their daughter Chandler, a recent Warrior graduate and former outstanding Warrior athlete, now attends College of the Redwoods and their son Colton is a sophomore playing on the Warrior junior varsity football team and doing really well. We can expect to see a lot of Colton during the rest of his Warrior years.
This is another great Warrior family that has stayed in Crescent City and helped to make this such a great place to live.
Dick Trone writes on his reflections and the history of Del Norte High Warrior sports. Trone, who played football for the Warriors and graduated in 1951, had an illustrious career on the gridiron at Humboldt State University. Trone was football head coach at Del Norte High for a number of years before retiring.