Shots in the Darke


Have you ever wondered what it must feel like to miss only one putt of under ten feet in length during an eighteen hole round of golf? Just ask Brian Harman who became the “Champion Golfer of the Year” by winning The Open title at Royal Liverpool Golf Club Sunday. Pulling away Friday from the rest of the field by shooting a 65, he calmly withstood any and all challenges the final two rounds to win by six strokes over Jason Day, Jon Rahm (he of the record-setting 63 Saturday) and two others. Oh, did I say one putt missed under ten feet for one round? Harman accomplished that for the entire tournament!!

Speaking of golf, this is the time of the season when various organizations hold outings for the purpose of fundraising. All proceeds go for worthwhile causes and bring out participants from all walks of life and golfing skill sets, hence the need for the scramble formats always played. I’ll be playing in three tournaments this week starting with the Annie Oakley Classic at Turtle Creek Monday, the annual event for the benefit of the Cancer Association of Darke County. Always a fun time, money raised stays in Darke County for the sole purpose of supporting local residents dealing with the protocols of cancer treatments.

Another outing in which I’ll tee it up will be held at the Troy Country Club on Friday, the Edison Foundation’s Drive for Scholarships. Proceeds are dedicated to the support of local students attending Edison State. As is typical of similar events, lunch is provided and door prizes awarded for various feats of golfing skills and pure luck!!

Finally, if I haven’t run out of balls and tees, on Saturday afternoon the annual Greenville Football Boosters extravaganza will be held at Stillwater Ridge in Webster, south of Versailles. With a goal of raising monies for the benefit of the GHS football program, the playing field consists of past and present players and the usual following of families, fans, and financial supporters. Kelly Norris and staff always do a standout job of making everyone welcome, leading to an enjoyable few hours of golf and fellowship.

Hard to believe but the first high school football games of the fall season kick off just three weeks from Friday! Greenville opens at home versus the Golden Eagles of Eaton, a team which made the playoffs again last year. Other SWBL teams that played in the postseason in ‘22, include Bellbrook, Monroe, Brookville, and Valley View, a state D-V semi-finalist. The SWBL has expanded this year to a 12-team league with the addition of two football powerhouses in Edgewood and Franklin which should make for some highly competitive Friday nights!

In the Miami Valley League, D-III state semi-finalist Tipp returns along with playoff teams in Piqua, Troy, Sidney, and Xenia. Greenville has an unusual schedule following the opener against Eaton as the Wave play four straight games against their rivals in the Miami (North) division of the league and then close the regular season with five contests against Valley (South) teams including Sidney, one of the Wave’s oldest foes.

As the high school season begins, the Western Ohio Athletic Conference is seeking a new commissioner. The schedule is not on the WOAC’s web site as of this writing other than Arcanum hosting Covington and National Trail traveling to Milton-Union in week one. It should be another interesting season in small school play as Tri-Village and Preble Shawnee along with Ansonia and Twin Valley South all participated in postseason action last year.

Meanwhile up north the mighty Midwest Athletic Conference will have its usual field of state title contenders in D-V, D-VI, and D-VII. Over in the eastern areas the Three Rivers Conference should again see strong play from last year’s playoff teams in regional D-V finalist Milton-Union, Riverside, and Lehman Catholic.

Finally, a few quick thoughts—

It’s always a great time of the year as the anticipation grows for both high school and college fall sports—it seems like the weekends can’t come quickly enough!!

Have you watched the Reds postgame show following each televised game on Bally Sports? Brad Giesenschlag (you almost have to be a family member to spell that correctly!) and former Red reliever Sam LeCure do a great job of recapping the game, surrounded by a rowdy bunch of Reds fans!

And have you seen the new uniforms that the Browns will be wearing a few times this year, complete with white helmets with orange and brown stripes? If they are even close to the sharp Bengals all-white outfits with the white helmet and black tiger stripes, long-suffering Cleveland fans will at least have that to look forward to if Deshaun Watson doesn’t live up to his potential this year! Stay healthy and active!!