by Bill Turner
Did you miss me? This column took last week off as high schools enjoyed the spring break. But, everything is back to business as usual, as the final drive to district playoffs and the eventual spring jubilee in Radford are on the horizon to crown state champions.
The Wild Bill Baseball Top-3 had a major shake-up as Lord Botetourt has moved into the number one spot with its 13-3 record. Hidden Valley (10-3) falls to second after its loss to Cave Spring Tuesday. The Knights, with the win and a perfect 5-0 record in the River Ridge, move into the third spot. Poll busters ready to make a move include North Cross (12-4) and Northside (11-6).
In the WB Softball Top-3 William Byrd retains first place with its 11-3 record. Northside is lurking in the shadows at #2 (12-2). Moving into the poll at third is Cave Spring after their sixth straight win Tuesday, which put the Lady Knights atop the River Ridge. Northside visits Byrd on Friday with the Vikings looking to avenge their earlier 6-0 loss to the Terriers.
With the price of gas continuing to rise, the place to be this summer for a fun-filled evening may well be Salem Memorial Ballpark. The Red Sox are off to a fantastic 17-6 start in the Carolina League and have the early lead in the Southern Division. Manager Bruce Crabbe has the Sox clicking with a mixture of speed, hitting and solid pitching. The Red Sox are home Thursday through Sunday in a four-game showdown against Myrtle Beach. Game times are 7:05 T-F; 6:05 Sat; 4:05 Sun.
Some of the best junior golfers in the world converge on the Roanoke Country Club links next week for the Scott Robertson Memorial Tournament Friday through Sunday, May 13-15. Previous Robertson winners continue to show up on both the PGA and LPGA Tour. Admission is free for spectators.
Don’t forget to get the early jump on the Greenbrier Classic PGA Tour event in White Sulphur Springs, July 25-31. The First Tee of the Roanoke Valley gets a cut of badges purchased through the organization and that includes daily admission to the tournament and all concerts, including Keith Urban and Tim McGraw.
It’s looking more and more like the new sport gaining popularity in the high school ranks is lacrosse. A longtime varsity sport at North Cross and Roanoke Catholic, lacrosse has already been added at Patrick Henry and William Fleming. Club teams at Hidden Valley and Cave Spring are moving fast as well and will become fully endorsed in the next 2-3 years.
Now to the mailbag where a reader asked what were the most absurd rules in professional sports. Here’s my top-three. If you have one to add, let me know.
Pro Football: the 2-minute warning. Why does anyone need to be warned about this moment at the end of each half. Anyone who can read knows when there is two minutes left on the clock. This is just a cheesy gimmick to get in another beer commercial. Thank goodness in baseball we don’t have a ninth inning warning.
Pro Basketball: the advance the ball to mid court rule. This is the only rule in pro sports that penalizes the team that is successful and rewards the team that fails and can’t play defense. The basic premise is if the opposing team scores, you call a timeout to shrug off the court. Then, when play resumes, you get to restart the game at mid court. Apparently, the school of thought is that you’re so despondent, it’s necessary to give you a half-court head start at the end of a game.
Pro Wrestling: the tag in tag-team. Why is a tag needed? Eventually everyone is going to be in the ring and hit over the head with a chair. So why slap fingers in the middle of it all.
Quotation of the week- “What hair color do they put on the driver’s licenses of bald men?” – George Carlin
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