Two Boots, Two Hail Marys, and a Boat

Shots in the Darke

Where to begin on a Sunday evening while waiting for Da Bears to take on the Packers?  How about a few quick hitters from the NFL? 

Thursday night saw another in what should be a decade or so of quarterbacking duels between the Chargers’ Justin Herbert and Patrick Mahomes of the Chiefs. Great young playcallers with solid supporting casts make the AFC West a powerhouse division. 

How do you like Al Michaels and Kirk Herbstreit as the announcing duo of Thursday Night Football on Amazon Prime? Michaels is one of the all-time best while Herbstreit from Centerville via THE is one of the busiest in the business, covering college football including the always popular College Game Day on ESPN. 

Every team in the AFC North LOST Sunday!! What a Sunday as the Ravens blew a 21-point  lead in the fourth quarter in going down to the Dolphins; the Steelers lost to the Patriots; and  the Browns somehow blew a 13-point advantage over the J-E-T-S with less than two minutes  to play. From Week 9 of 2002 to Week 1 of this season, teams had lost 2,229 consecutive games when trailing by at least 13 points in the final two minutes—leave it to the Browns to make enough mental and physical errors to break that streak! 

And the Bengals!! Losing for the second straight time to an opponent’s field goal on the last play of the game, first to the Steelers, and Sunday to “America’s Team”. Last year’s media  favorite Joe Burrow was hounded by a tough Cowboy defense, being sacked six times to go  with last week’s seven. Where is the ballyhooed offensive line that was supposed to provide the “Franchise” with time to spare? Oktoberfest in the Queen City suddenly has seen an increase in beer consumption as fans try to drown their sorrows! 

Time for a housekeeping item—if you miss any “Shots in the Darke” on Facebook, you can  Google DarkeCountyNow, click on the three bar menu in the upper right screen, click writers,  click staff, click my name, and all archived columns will appear.  

The Wave suffered their fifth loss of the high school football season, falling to the MVL’s best team thus far, the Buccaneers of Xenia. X has already demolished Troy and Piqua and hosts likewise undefeated Tipp City this coming Friday in a huge contest with big playoff computer points going to the victor. Greenville should be able to garner its first win this fall on the road at  West Carrollton—defense continues to be a major concern for the Green and White who have  proven that they can score, ranking second in the league offensively. 

What a great game was played in New Madison to a sellout crowd Friday night with the homestanding Tri-Village Patriots scoring late to beat previously undefeated Ansonia 37-36.  The Patriots move to 3-1 in the WOAC while the Tigers drop to 2-1 along with the Arrows of Preble Shawnee. Who you say leads the conference standings? How about the 3-0 National Trail Blazers!! 

Congratulations to Greenville’s Tessa Fine on winning the Gray Division of the girls’ cross country race Saturday night at the Troy Night Run. Tessa paced a field of 267 runners in leading the Lady Wave to a third place standing with Jadyn Norris finishing a strong nineteenth  for Stephanie Lind’s team. Mississinawa’s Taylee Woodbury took third in a great run for the Blackhawks. On the boys’ side, Trey Rammel of GHS placed fifth and Noah Stevens fifteenth out of 370 thinclads to enable the Wave to also finish third in the Gray Division. Ashton Paul of Arcanum came in sixteenth for the Trojans on what was a beautiful evening run in front of a crowd estimated at over 3,000 spectators. 

Two Hail Marys come to mind from Saturday’s college football schedule, one answered, one not. Appalachian State, fresh over the upset of Texas A&M the previous week and hosting the aforementioned College Game Day, overcame Troy on a last gasp heave that bounced off of several defenders into the hands of a Mountaineer receiver. Meanwhile, Cal saw a last play bomb hit two Golden Bear receivers before falling harmlessly to the hallowed turf at Notre Dame. Must be something to the mystique of the Golden Dome and Touchdown Jesus in South Bend!! 

Finally, Kathy and I spent most of last week with good friends on the Erie Canal, piloting a 42-foot canal boat through the locks and docks of western New York State. Complete novices at boating (other than a pontoon boat!) we would highly recommend the services of Brian Keenan and staff at Erie Canal Adventures if you’re looking for something a little out of the ordinary, camping on board a canal boat. Google or call (585) 329-7746 for more information. Have a great week, enjoy the beginning of fall weather in the Miami Valley!! 


Dr. Alex Warner | Correspondent for Darke County Now

Dr. Alex Warner / Correspondent

Alex Warner is a retired Greenville chiropractor as well as a former educator and high school coach. He has over 30 years experience in broadcasting high school sports on both radio and public access television in addition to producing over 50 episodes of the local television series “Our Town”. A man of many interests, he is naturally curious with a “gift of gab”. He currently writes the weekly sports column “Shots in the Darke” and hosts “Talk of the Town” featuring people, places, and events that make Darke County the place we choose to reside.

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