By Mark Carpenter –
The long-awaited rematch on the hardwood between the Venture Hawks and the Adams County Sheriff’s Department is set for Feb. 12 at West Union High School. For many local hoops fans, this battle is the highlight of the season and for a $5 donation at the door, fans can get an afternoon of entertainment like no other.
Back to haunt the dreams of the Sheriff’s Department will be “Dunking” Darrel Grooms, who poured in 48 points in last year’s 70-53 win for the Hawks. The Sheriff’s Department does a wonderful job of handling law enforcement in Adams County, but they had no defense for Grooms and most certainly again will be sliced and diced by the Hawks’ leading scorer.
The annual Hawks-Sheriff’s Department game is a fund raiser for local Special Olympics programs plus People First of Adams County and has grown by leaps and bounds every year, with this year not expected to be any different. Another special facet of this year’s contest is the celebration of the 50th anniversary of County Boards of Developmental Disabilities and past superintendents of the Board have been invited to join the festivities.
Event organizers have been hard at work setting up the game and all the surrounding activities and have also announced a very special guest as Cincinnati Enquirer columnist and author Paul Daugherty will be on hand. Daugherty is known as one of the finest sports columnists in the country and is also a published author, including “Uncomplicated Life, An: A Father’s Memoir of His Exceptional Daughter”, which is described by Amazon as “ A father’s exhilarating and funny love letter to his daughter with Down syndrome whose vibrant and infectious approach to life has something to teach all of us about how we can better live our own.”
The game will also be broadcast on C103 Radio with Don Bowles and Brett Spencer providing the play-by-play and commentary, and former C103 broadcaster Gary McClellan will emcee the event.
“Boots”, the therapy cat will also be on hand for all the festivities of the day.
While most of the attention will be focused on the intense hardwood action, there will be many other activities going on at the same time. There will be t-shirts for sale, Split The Pot, the Ping Pong Ball Challenge, and at halftime the crowd will again be energized by a performance from the Ignite Dance Team. Adams County Safe Communities will be presenting their second annual Healthy Hero Award and a special proclamation will be presented by the Adams County Commissioners. The Peebles Athletic Boosters will again handle concessions, which means that there will be plenty of tasty food available.
Community involvement is always an integral part of fund raising events and with that in mind, Sheriff Kimmy Rogers will have a special assistant on the bench (which he certainly will need) in Harriet DeMint, who is one of the area’s biggest basketball fans and the grandmother of West Union guard Elijah McCarty.
On Feb. 12, the doors will open at 1 p.m. with tip off for the game set for 3 p.m., with the action preceded by the always inspiring rendition of the national Anthem by Maria Sexton. Don’t miss out on this chance to see sports in its purest form, all smiles and happiness, and all for a great cause.