There was a time when area recreation softball fans could look forward to picking up the Olean Times Herald on a daily basis and reading about their favorite players and teams.
Going back to the 1970s when the home runs leaving Marcus Park were as limited as strikeouts in a slow-pitch game, the TH once was able to run standings and even MUNY League box scores.
That’s when we had the time to attend games and watch the action unfold.
We can’t do that any more. Early deadlines and evening shifts limit our availability.
Rather, we’ve come to rely on teams to report their game results on scoresheets that are dropped off in the mail slot at our front door.
A handful of teams are good about turning in their scores. Others? Not so much.
Hence the reason we limit the number of times we run standings for area leagues. We have to wait for updates from league representatives to verify the teams’ records.
To that end, Trish Carney of the Olean Women’s League and Billy Bizzaro of the Olean Sports Locker circuit do the best great job of keeping us informed.
Would that the other leagues took their sports so seriously.
Reports from the Sunday Tavern and Industrial leagues are limited to the few WINNING teams that choose to turn in a report.
Of course, the TH is always blamed because it’s easy to shoot the messenger. But we run what we get ... which is precious little.
Sadly, the lack of interest by the participants and league hierarchy is reflected in the minuscule coverage.
Looking back, the TH often ran game action photos of the likes of Tommy Keane, George Santora, Herbie Elmore, and Wayne Dornsife.
Mini Bar was the king of league champions, especially when pitching Hall of Famer Tom Irons was on his game.
A few years later, guys like Rocky Weitzel, Mike Calabro and Mitch Simon helped write their share of softball headlines.
WE’VE ALREADY heard positive reports on the action unfolding at Good Times of Olean.
Kudos to West Long and his associates for a job well done ... so far.
Apparently, bowling leagues are either filled or filling up fast.
It would appear, recreation bowling has returned to the city of Olean.
But there are plenty of other activities to tide us over waiting for lanes to open.
There’s putt-putt, kan-jam, corn hole, volleyball, darts and arcade games.
And from what we’ve been told, Hammerback’s Bar and Grill, the Snak Shak and The Point have lots of menu selections to choose from.
RUMOR has it, the Italian Festival hosted annually at St. John’s Roman Catholic Church in North Olean, drew a good crowd for its bocce tournament.
I wonder how the Anastasias did ... seems they always dominate the lawn bowling event.
WE’RE five months away from the opening tips for area high school basketball teams, but several players from throughout the Big 30 have been working hard on their games this summer.
Between the Portville-based high school league, which involves teams from nine Big 30 schools, and a handful of AAU teams that boast area talent, it would seem high school hoops fans can look forward to some great performances this coming season.
(Jim Melaro, a Times Herald sports writer, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org)