Sports Extra with Dave Ross: A good time to look ahead

Sports Extra - With Dave Ross

I’m hopeful and reasonably sure that we’ll gradually be getting back to normal with various events around the area. This would include a resumption of Sidney’s bicentennial activities on the heels of the outstanding Shelby County bicentennial that kicked off a year ago and recently concluded. Regardless of the virus situation and its limitations on public gatherings, the Shelby County Historical Society and Sidney Daily News will continue to circulate pertinent and fascinating stories of our past.

IUTIS hits 90

At some point the local IUTIS Club should be marking its 90th anniversary with another season of boys softball at Harmon Field. A separate salute will appear here as the modified season approaches. They were scheduled to open in late April.

30 and 0 plus 50 years

It’s been set for 20 years and it’s now almost here, the 50th anniversary of “30 and 0,” representing the unblemished Sidney High School football teams of 1968-70. Events will take place on the Thursday and Friday preceding Labor Day including the Friday home football game with Tipp City.

Five graduating classes are involved and each has a captain to recruit team members to come home for the festivities. Early response has been solid with the class of 1970 leading the way as that weekend will also include their 50th class reunion. Positive early replies (from all classes) have come from Montana, Texas, Florida, Indiana, Michigan, and (of course) Ohio.

Late head coach Dave Haines will be represented by son Kris who will be coming from Chicago. Kris was Sidney’s 1974 MVP, starred as a Notre Dame receiver, and played multiple seasons with the Chicago Bears.

Lehman’s 50th

There’s also a significant golden anniversary across town at Lehman Catholic High School as it marks 50 years since the merger of Sidney Holy Angels and Piqua Catholic into Lehman. It would be great to see some former players organize an event to salute the school’s 1970 football team at a 2020 home game, possibly Homecoming.

Piqua Catholic had been playing football until Lehman’s founding while Holy Angels hadn’t fielded a team since 1936. Holy Angels beat Piqua Catholic twice in 1936 to end the gridiron rivalry.

January’s Mayoral visit

Planning is already underway for two annual baseball centered January fund raisers, the Fort Loramie Dugout Club and Versailles Diamond Club on the first two Saturdays of the new year. On January 2 Loramie will venture beyond baseball to feature Shelby County’s most decorated military veteran who also saw duty with the legendary Seal Team Six. Now retired Steve VanHorn is a 1986 Botkins graduate.

A week later Versailles will honor its own Kyle Ahrens who recently concluded his Michigan State basketball career. Also on the docket will be Cincinnati Reds Hall of Famer Sean Casey, now a mainstay of the MLB Network. The immensely popular first baseman was known as the “Mayor of Riverfront.”

As per usual, Korean pro Jared Hoying (Loramie) and San Diego’s Craig Stammen (North Star/Versailles) will headline both on-stage interview programs. As MC I have the pleasure of interviewing all of these folks in addition to those added later.

Sports Extra

With Dave Ross