Thomasville Times Enterprise

Local Sports

July 15, 2014

Looking forward to new adventures in Thomasville

THOMASVILLE — There are farms littering the mountainsides and cows dotting the fields. Corn grows tall and back woods are meant for mudding and four-wheeling.

We have an entire parade and day-long celebration called “Dryden Dairy Day” to celebrate our culture. And when you want to switch from milk to beer, there’s a tiny little place called the Dryden Hotel — the only place in town — where you’re bound to run into high school classmates and the parents who watched you play softball all those years.

This is New York. The real New York. And it’s where I’m from.

So while your new Times-Enterprise sports editor didn’t grow up in the South, she does have a background similar to yours. Except that my blood bleeds orange and blue; last week was a good baseball week for me with those three easy wins over your Braves. Thanks for that assistance, since the Mets have had some rough times so far this season. Just wait until Matt Harvey is back and Noah Syndergaard joins the starting rotation next year. It’s all about 2015 for us.

As I grew older, I fell in love with baseball and then fell harder for hockey, thanks to my college and the Western New York culture. There is absolutely nothing in this world like a beer and a hot dog at the ballpark or a puck sliding dangerously close to the goal line in a Stanley Cup Final overtime game. If you know the specific goal I’m talking about, we’re destined to be instant friends.

But what first turned my attention to sports was football, a game I happily watched as a toddler from my dad’s lap. Football was more of a social gathering where I grew up and my college team wasn’t anything special, so I look forward to experiencing the intense passion south Georgia holds for high school football. I’m already in awe at the stadiums and the preparation your schools put into the game.

If we’re listing sports as my first passion, journalism is a mighty close second. I’ve always loved reading and writing, which is why I went to the College at Brockport (State University of New York) to get a journalism degree.

I climbed up the college newspaper’s ranks and found that finding the truth and protecting First Amendment rights mean more to me than I had realized. I covered stories that weren’t easy to tell, including a domestic violence murder in my freshman dorm, and though the community wasn’t happy about our reporting I wholeheartedly knew we were doing the right thing by telling it. I strive for getting it right and being fair to all while telling the issues and stories that need to be told.

The bronze winner in the “Negley’s passions” list is traveling. I spent a week in Chicago two falls ago, where I touched the Wrigley grass and enjoyed deep dish pizza. I drove out to Phoenix, Ariz., for a summer job last year and slowly road tripped my way back home to New York with stops in mighty Dallas, quaint Nashville, Tenn. and Pittsburgh, Penn., a place my ancestors helped develop many years ago. For the previous six months I’ve worked and explored in Charlotte, N.C.

This time around, I invited my parents to come with me on my road trip to Thomasville. They loved it here so much, I was a tad concerned they were secretly plotting to move in with me and never go back home.

We were able to see a lot of what your large town has to offer, including the Big Oak and Pebble Hill Plantation.  I’m looking forward to seeing and experiencing more of it as I un dig the unique sports stories I’m sure you’re bound to have.

Now that you know all of this about me, I look forward to learning more about all of you. You can send me an email (cassandra.negley@gaflnews.com), shoot me a tweet (@casnegley), or simply say hello at Publix next time I’m stocking my fridge with ice cream. Because a fridge without ice cream is a sad sight indeed.

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