Shots in the Darke

Did you happen to watch the lengthy television coverage of the US Open over the  weekend? Twenty-nine year-old Wyndham Clark displayed nerves of steel in winning his first  major golf championship, just a month after claiming his first PGA title at the Wells Fargo  Championship. In holding off five-time major winner Rory McIlroy, Clark exhibited the fortitude  of a much more experienced professional to take home the crown jewel of the United States  Golf Association.  

With a huge throng gathered around the 18th and final hole Sunday the Denver native had  to two-putt from almost 60’ to win by a single stroke. His first putt was a gem, leaving only a  foot or so of green between the ball and the cup. I don’t know about you but even that short  putt for the title, not to mention the $3.6 million share of a $20 million purse, would have made my knees knock! An interesting tournament which was highlighted by record-setting rounds by  first Rickie Fowler and then fifteen minutes later matched by Xander Schauffele, both with  eighteens of 62. 

The Los Angeles Country Club course was challenging with holes ranging in length from 81  to 612 yards, not to mention the infamous barrancas (there’s a good chance you were asking  yourself what the heck is a barranca?), narrow winding gorges that came into play on several  holes, much to the dismay of many of the world’s finest golfers! 

Here’s a question that just occurred to me—what is your labor of love? I was thinking about  this as Ty House and I start preparing for our 28th year of telecasting high school basketball  and football on YouTube via GHS Interactive Media, our latest media partner. Although neither  of us is paid a penny, we both have enjoyed watching high school athletes and communities  share in the triumphs and sorrows that only athletic competition can offer and in being able to  bring these games to those who can’t attend in person for one reason or another. Our reward  is in creating memories for the young athletes and in being recognized and appreciated by  viewers.  

A few other quick examples come to mind—Gaylen Blosser and Dale Barger of devote countless hours to covering high school sports around the area;  any coach, booster, and parent of youngsters involved in not only athletics but also any of the  myriad of extracurricular activities that are available; and fans that support their local teams,  groups, and organizations.  

Let’s not overlook the individuals at all levels who are dedicated to the pursuit of their  interests, often times forsaking other activities or demands. Remember the old saying that it  takes “10,000 hours of practice to truly excel at something”? Not many people can obtain that  goal or make that type of commitment but knowing that you’ve tried your best is reward  enough in itself. What’s been your “labor of love”? 

Enough with philosophizing—let’s talk about Lake Life!! Like many others we enjoy  spending time on the lake, boating, swimming, and just all-around relaxing. This past week  we’ve been at beautiful Lake Wawasee in Syracuse, Indiana, halfway between Fort Wayne and  South Bend, just north of Warsaw. Wawasee is Indiana’s largest natural lake, over 3,400 acres  of spring fed water with a depth in places of over 70’ and over 25 miles of shoreline lined with  quaint older cottages, impressive newer housing, and many residences that could only be classified as “McMansions”! A part of the northern Indiana “Lake Country” Syracuse is a  community with a little over 3,000 full-time residents but a seasonal population of over 20,000.  

Many around our area have gone south to Norris Lake and Lake Cumberland over the years  and they are truly beautiful bodies of water and outdoor recreation. Along with other lakes in  both Kentucky and Tennessee they have been traditions of family activities and relationships  over the years. However, if you’re looking for something new, and only a two-and-a half hour  drive away, check out Lake Wawasee! Be sure to also look into Lake Webster and Tippecanoe  Lake while you’re up north—great places to kayak, boat, paddle board, fish, relax, etc! 

How about those Reds, winners of eight straight! Here’s a quick trivia question—when did  the Reds last win the NL Central Division and, as a bonus, off the top of your head who won  the 2015 World Series? Let’s go one step further—what NL Central team has claimed the most  division titles in the 26 years of the division’s existence? 

Ready for the answers? The Reds last won the division in 2012; the Kansas City Royals  won the Series in 2015, one year after losing in the Fall Classic to the Giants; and the Cardinals  have captured 12 division titles, the most of any division rivals. Have a great week!!