Sierra Sun, Tahoe Bonanza journalists earn top Nevada honors | SierraSun.com

Sierra Sun, Tahoe Bonanza journalists earn top Nevada honors

First-year Incline head coach Indra Winquest celebrates the Highlanders' Division III state championship win with the Incline crowd and his players on Saturday, March 1, 2014. Wright's image won Best Sports Photo for the North Lake Tahoe Bonanza's "Community" division in the 2014 Nevada Press Association's Better Newspapers Contest.
Sylas Wright / North Lake Tahoe Bonanza |

INCLINE VILLAGE, Nev. — The Sierra Sun and North Lake Tahoe Bonanza news staff was honored over the weekend for excellence in journalism with a slew of awards in the Nevada Press Association’s Better Newspapers Contest.

Staff at both papers took home 12 total awards, including four first-place wins for the Bonanza and three for the Sun. Winners were announced Saturday evening at the NPA’s annual banquet in Las Vegas.

For the Bonanza, Sports Editor Sylas Wright placed first for Best Sports Story for his March 2, 2014, feature, “Girls win first state championship since 1985.”

The story recapped the Incline High School girls basketball team’s Division III state title win, 53-38, over Pershing County, marking the school’s first championship since 1985, and the third in school history.

Wright also placed first for Best Sports Photo with the image “How sweet it is,” which published with the same story, showing first-year Incline girls basketball coach Indra Winquest celebrating the victory.

“Fine celebration shot,” NPA judges said about the image. “You captured the moment.”

Wright also placed second in the Best Sports Story category for his Nov. 20, 2013, feature “Girls capture second straight DIII state title,” recapping the Incline High girls soccer 1-0 overtime win over Whittell to win the state championship.

Further, Bonanza page designer Emily Stott placed first for Best Page One Design, and Stott and Laci Thompson shared first-place honors for Best Page Designers.

“Clean, attractive and readable. Good use of art and typefaces,” judges said about both designers.

For the Sun, Community Editor Amy Edgett placed first in the “Best Feature Story” category for her emotional human-interest tale about Truckee Dr. Brooks Bloomfield and his ongoing battle with Multiple System Atrophy in the July 17, 2013, story “Living while dying, one day at a time.”

“This was by far the best entry in the category. The opening captures the reader and the attachment holds through … GREAT JOB!” judges said.

Wright, meanwhile, took home first-place honors in the Best Sports Feature category for his June 20, 2013, piece, “A fine hike — for a graveyard,” which told a tale of a camping and hiking trip at Graveyard Lakes, located on the western slope of the central Sierra.

“Beautiful descriptions of scenery and trail; makes readers feel like they’ve already hiked it,” judges wrote.

The Sun also placed first for Best Special Section for its collaborative work on the summer 2013 edition of Tahoe Magazine.

Edgett and Wright each earned a second-place award as well, for Best Feature Story and Best Sports Story, respectively.

Meanwhile, Stott earned a second-place award for Best Page Designer, and Sun/Bonanza Reporter Margaret Moran got a third-place nod for Best Business Feature.

This marks the third straight year Edgett and Wright took home first-place awards in the Nevada contest. Further, Moran earned first-place honors in 2013 in the Best Spot News category for he Sierra Sun.

NPA member newspapers serve readers in Nevada and are awarded top honors in the state each year in reporting, photography, graphic design, editorial writing, advertising and general excellence. This year’s awards were for content created March 2013 through March 2014.

The twice-weekly Sun competes in the “Intermediate” category, pitting itself against some of the state’s equal-sized and much-larger papers, including the Nevada Appeal, Daily Sparks Tribune and Elko Daily Free Press.

The weekly Bonanza is in the “Community” division, competing against several papers, including the Henderson Press, Virginia City News and Ely Times.

To view all the awards, click here, then scroll down to the Intermediate and Community links.