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ed note: Something new for our viewers: LLhoops will be bringing to you some of the media/followers and basic fans of LL hoops. He/she gets the 5 question interview that our LL coaches get- media style. Enjoy!

Matthew Catrillo, of the Lebanon Daily News, provides us with some insights on covering LL games. He had execellent coverage of the Crest/McCaskey game in Dec. that went OT.


 1) Can you give us a brief bio of your career?

I started at LDN last February doing Sports three days a week, and news two days a week, then moved to all sports in September after Andrew Callahan left LDN. Before that, I was a part-time sports writer for The Daily Item in Sunbury, as well as a News/Sports Anchor/Reporter for News radio 1070 WKOK in Sunbury, and did play-by-play for Lewisburg HS Football on sister station 100.9 The Valley.

Graduated from Clarion University in May 2015 - there I was Sports Director of our campus radio for 3 years, TV for 1 year. Hosted my own Football Radio Show, and did play-by-play and color. TV- PBP and color, sports and news anchor/hosted the Clarion Sports Show, "Golden Eagles Live." Also was sports writer for our campus newspaper.

2) What's the best part about your job? What's the most challenging part of it?

The best part about my job is doing something I love and have had a passion for every since I was younger. I get to be a part of the sports world everyday. That's pretty cool - along with having your name in the paper everyday, and getting to bring information all fans want to know about their teams, being in the know constantly. When I go to a game, that's always something I coveted to do was know the inside scoop of the game.

What's challenging currently is adjusting to our company's new way of H.S. sports coverage. It's a little different than what we've done in the past. Friday night's during football season are always challenging, writing not only my story for a tight deadline, but also doing stats for your game and then getting freelancer's stories in before deadline. It's a total mad dash to the finish, but its still fun (most of the time).


3) What are your thoughts on social media/print media/radio and tv media?

Social Media is so critical for reporters today not only to get the information out, but as quick as possible. Especially when there's a big breaking story, news or sports, things can blow up instantly. Great example of that was when I covered McCaskey-Cedar Crest last week - had video of Cole Laney's game-tying shot. I had notifications blowing up my Twitter for a good day or two. Video overall is definitely becoming very important, while not being too long with attention spans being shorter than normal nowadays.

Print unfortunately, has taken a big hit with everything going digital. The first big one was seeing the Pittsburgh Post Gazette go all-digital from print. It's also become easier to listen to radio out of market with so many stations having live online streaming. TV is heading in that direction as well in being able to watch things live online, especially sporting events.


4) How do you tweet, take video's and cover a game in written form?

I try to tweet as often as possible from games, because I know if I'm a fan, I want updates constantly if I know I can't watch a game. In each tweet, I want to make sure I give the basics first (score, time, quarter), then any analysis or stats. I've also tried to incorporate more video because its becoming so critical in the field, both on Twitter and in my stories. As far as writing the actual story, this goes back to our new way of coverage - taking a feature angle, or doing maybe an x-amount of observations piece, because we've notice in our numbers, people love seeing numbers in headlines. Or if its a crazy game like McCaskey-Cedar Crest - you focus on the big moments of the game. But overall, our readers don't seem to want long, rehashed game stories.


5) What is the best game(s) you have covered? why? particulars?

I haven't been here for that long, but definitely McCaskey-Cedar Crest is one, probably the lead dog. Covering A-C football's Section 3 championship was pretty cool too. The other would be Game 3 between the Hershey Bears and Portland Pirates in their Atlantic Division semifinals series. Bears lost in 3OT 2-1, the longest game ever played at Giant Center. I also covered Penn St-Maryland earlier this season, where Saquon Barkley rushed for a then season-high 202 yards and a touchdown.

Bonus: If there were anything you could change the way we get information, what would it be?

I don't know if there's a specific way to answer this just because it's so easy to have access to social media today. You see the fake twitter accounts of reporters who will try to doop people into fabricated breaking news. There's blog sites and other websites with fabricated information. You just have to be extra careful when finding news today, unfortunately that's just the way it is.


~Dell Jackson




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