Warrior Memories: Changing seasons

By Dick Trone December 05, 2011 10:42 am

People who work on a normal calendar look at this time of the year as the season changing from fall to winter, with the prospect of rainy days and cold nights.

Sports nuts like me look at this time of the year as changing from football season to basketball with the prospect of spending exciting nights in Thunen Gym watching our boys and girls basketball teams and our wrestling squad thrill Warrior fans.

I am really excited to see Blaine Lopez back on the court leading our varsity boys team. Blaine has always been one of my all-time favorite players when I was a coach and has proven to be as good a coach as he was a player.

The girls will again be coached by Buzz McCulloch. Past experience tells me that we can again expect some exciting times when our girls take the floor as Buzz is an excellent coach and a person I respect and admire.

With the start of basketball I can’t help but look back at when I entered Del Norte High School in the fall of 1947. Since I was too young to play varsity football and the Warriors did not have a junior varsity program back then, my first chance to don the red and white of the Warriors was when basketball season arrived. 

This was something I had long looked forward to. I had watched teams coached by my dad, Shirley Trone, from the time I was little (and he was coaching at Clearlake Union High School in Lakeport) to here.

I still remember how thrilled I was when I joined three seniors and one other freshman on the starting five for the Warrior lightweights. The three seniors were Leonard Neilsen, Bob McNeely and Howard Carter. The other freshman was Johnny Fraser. We were looking forward to a good year.

We opened the season at home against the Hoopa High Warriors and started the season with a great win. Unfortunately things went downhill from there and we didn’t win as many games as we thought we would, but I still remember the season as a great start to my career as a Warrior. While Bob, Leonard and Howard are gone, John and I still talk about the fun we had.

Warrior sports have always been great, so that’s why I, like all Warrior fans, look forward so eagerly to spending fun nights in Thunen  Gym cheering loudly for our present Warrior youths. Our young people are great, and it is a real privilege to support them.

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 head football coach at Del Norte High for a number of years before retiring.