Did you say "wait"?
I would have made the dog sit or down, then throw, then release/command for retrieve (but get the retrieve.. the dog anticipated another stick being thrown and didn't bother to bring the one it had back). I wouldn't say "closer", i'd say "no, front". otherwise the dog isn't learning what a front really is. I'd also use a platform to get the front positioning close enough and not crooked.
As far as your commands. Your praise didn't sound like praise. The dog needs an energetic praise.. if you had said "excellent" like a prosac'ed overdosed idiot, she'd probably have a) come back faster, b) the proper front will be easier to get, and c) not lowered in drive. I'd also keep the second stick out of view. You don't want it moving around while you command.
I wouldn't call the dog back, down them, or otherwise mess with them when they are going to get the stick often... *maybe* 10% of the time. Otherwise the dog will get less and less enthusiastic about getting the stick and more and more trying to anticipate you giving a command.
WHat are your training goals? IPO? Some other sport? Just for fun?
This is a perfect example of an amateur really not knowing what he's doing. I know she's receptive to training, so I just throw some commands in there for the sake having some control over her actions.
I wasn't too entusiastic verbally, but felt the "reward" was her stick and tug on it.
I would like to learn how to and what to say when:
1) I want her to stop and drop (down) on a send away
2) I want her to drop on command if she happens to be somewhere, and maybe some kids startle her on a bike or jog. I'd want to be able to down her from a distance.
These are just a couple of things I need to learn how to teach.