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November 13th, 2019
Liberal Local News

Panhandle firefighters battle multiple blazes

11 13 19 hwy 54 east fire 2Active flames moving quickly across open pasture east of Guymon. This picture was taken just before area firefighters arrived on scene. Photo courtesy Guymon Fire DepartmentROBERT PIERCE • Leader & Times


Firefighters from several area communities responded to multiple fires in the Oklahoma Panhandle this weekend.

Guymon, Okla., Fire Chief Grant Wadley said in a press release, around 1:10 p.m. Saturday, firefighters from his department were called to assist fellow firefighters from Tyrone, Okla., Baker, Okla., Adams, Okla., and Beaver County, Okla., on a cotton field fire at Road P and Mile 59 on the far eastern side of Texas County, Okla.

“As Guymon units were responding to this fire, a new grass fire at Road B and Mile 36 northwest of Hooker was reported,” Wadley said. “Hooker units requested assistance from Guymon, Hough and Optima on this fire which burned approximately 10 acres before firefighters extinguished the fire.”

Wadley said as firefighters were cleaning up that blaze, a third fire at 1:30 p.m. was reported south of Goodwell at Road FF and Mile 21.

“Goodwell, Guymon, Texhoma and Optima fire units responded to this blaze which burned approximately 20 acres,” he said. “The fires near Hooker and near Goodwell were found to be embers from burn barrels.”

Firefighters were again called to action Sunday. Wadley said another fire his department responded to was shortly before 12:30 p.m. Sunday located on U.S. Highway 54 and Mile 38 near Optima.

“This was a small fire on the side of the road which burned approximately one acre before it was extinguished,” he said.

Again shortly before 12:30 p.m., Guymon firefighters responded to a reported fire at the Ambassador Inn at 1909 N. Hwy. 64 in Guymon.

“Firefighters arrived to find heavy smoke coming from the lobby area of the motel and restaurant area,” Wadley said. “Firefighters found that a kitchen fire behind the manager’s office had occurred and produced an extensive amount of smoke throughout the office and restaurant area. The office and entire restaurant area were evacuated by motel staff and further by arriving firefighters.”

Special to the Leader & Times


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Courtesy photoROBERT PIERCE • Leader & Times


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Seward dominates Region VI, returns to national tourney

10skyhighAriana Arciniega gets up high for a shot against Colby Sunday in the Greenhouse. The Lady Saints won and advanced to the NJCAA National Tournament for the second straight year. L&T photo/Earl WattBy EARL WATT

Leader & Times

Slam after slam came from Seward’s outside hitters Sunday in the Region VI Final Four tournament Sunday in the Greenhouse, and when the final point was scored, the No. 3 Lady Saints had earned a ticket to the NJCAA National Championship for the second year in a row and the third time in four years.

Yanlis Feliz dominated on the outside in the opener against Hutchinson, driving the ball to the court time and time again to lead the Lady Saints to a 25-13, 25-17, 25-21 win. Felis recorded 18 kills in the match.

The Lady Saints established early leads on the Blue Dragons, but Seward made Hutchinson earn every point. During the second set, Hutchinson appeared to have scored a point when a Seward dig veered toward the back wall, and a second hit barely kept the ball off the floor. But Djuly Schmorantz was able to deliver the third hit inches away from the back wall and sent the ball over the net. A Hutchinson player attempted to make a play near the net, but the ball glanced off her hands and onto the floor, and the Greenhouse erupted in appreciation for the effort by the Lady Saints.

Seward continued to cruise through the set to finish on a 16-7 run.

In the third set, Seward took an early 7-3 lead, but Hutchinson never let the Lady Saints put the game out of reach, and the set was tied 17-17.

But the Lady Saints shut the door with an 8-14 run to earn the 25-21 win.

Seward faced Colby in the championship, pitting the top two teams from the regular season against each other for a trip to the national tournament.

Colby kep the first set close until the Lady Saints built a 12-7 lead, and they maintained the five-point lead until they ended the set on a 5-2 run to come away with a 25-17 win.

The Lady Trojans again played even with the Lady Saints in the second set with the game tied 20-20.

But the Lady Saints continued to demonstrate a strong ability to finish and went ona  5-1 run to earn a 25-21 win.

Seward put the match away early in the second set, climbing out to an 16-8 lead and maintaining the advantage the rest of the way for the 25-18 victory.

Feliz had 19 kills in the championship match, and Schmorantz added 18.

“It’s always tough to play tow matches in a day,” Seward coach Tony Trifonov said. “Especially with pressure. A big thanks to our fans who showed up, that really really helped us, and (basketball) coach (Jason) Sautter did a great job (cheering). That was awesome.”

The Lady Saints will prepare for the national tournament in Hutchinson Nov. 21-23.

“We have to rest, physically and mentally,” Trifonov said. “We need to  decompress and refocus for the national tournament. All the teams that have made it are good teams. We have played some of them. We will see who is in our bracket.”

The Lady Saints finished the season ranked third in the nation with a record of 28-2.

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Bloomberg’s real goal — a third party



Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg looks like he is about to jump into the Democratic primary for president.

But two things are apparent:

1. He won’t win the Democratic nomination.

2. He could be a very viable third party candidate with a real chance of winning the presidency.

He won’t win the Democratic nomination, in part, because he is repeating the exact same mistake his mayoral predecessor Rudy Giuliani made in seeking the Republican nomination in 2008 — he seems unwilling to compete in the early caucus and primary in Iowa and New Hampshire.

Giuliani learned that you can’t sit out the first two rounds, enter the ring in round three, and expect to be anointed the victor.

The gravitational force of the Iowa and New Hampshire primaries sucks in everybody and dominates the news. If you are not in, you are out and those who are in will suck up all the time, attention and oxygen.

By the time you get around to finding a primary that suits your liking, the world has passed you by. Your supporters have a new hero and you are yesterday’s news.

Even if Bloomberg manages to parachute into the race and still get a footing and run, he can’t win the Democratic nod. Bloomberg’s past as a Republican will come back to haunt him.

As New York City mayor, he wisely backed the stop-and-frisk program, for example, now anathema among Democrats. It puts criminals in jail before they can commit other crimes. No wonder the Democrats are opposed.