----- — It’s the first day of May, a great month for sports.
It begins with the Kentucky Derby on Saturday. My Old Kentucky Home is played before the start of the race on which hundreds of bets will be placed by folks who ordinarily don’t bet on thoroughbred horse racing.
A week later, practice begins for the Indianapolis 500. Pole Day qualifying should be keen once again and, you can almost bet that Helio Castroneves will be one of the drivers going for the top starting slot in the May 26 race in which he and Dario Franchitti could become a member of the exclusive four-wins-at-Indy club.
High school and college sports teams wind up their seasons and begin their bid for state or national honors in postseason action. Big Four action is slated this week.
NBA and NHL playoff action are on the card and major league baseball teams proceed through the second month of the season. My Pirates have gone 14-6 since their 1-5 start and were in first place in the NL Central before Tuesday’s games.
* Choices made — More high school seniors have announced their college choices with the intention of continuing to participate in athletics.
Several are from Terre Haute North:
TaPring Goatee intends to compete in track at Vincennes University. Ryan Baker and Andrew Behnke have plans to play golf at Franklin College. Behnke shot 79 for North’s second-best score in the MIC championships, missing all-conference honors by one shot. Cole Seward plans to play football and compete in track at Wabash. Charles Dillahunt plans to play football at Wabash. Nate Jahn will play basketball at DePauw. Evan Low will play basketball at Indiana Tech. Vasco Billberry will play football at Kentucky Wesleyan. Kaden Sloan will play soccer at Anderson.
* Austin Karazsia of Linton will play basketball at South Alabama. He capped a stellar four years of football and basketball by winning the Mental Attitude in the Class 2A state finals.
* Chelsie Wood of Turkey Run will play softball at St. Mary-of-the-Woods.
* Joel Wittenmeyer of Rockville will play basketball at Trine. He scored more than 700 points for the Rox.
* Megan Temples of Paris will play basketball at Lakeland. She averaged 12.2 points and 5.5 rebounds her senior year.
* Dean Danner of North Central will compete in track at Central Christian College in Kansas.
* Dylan Meyer is a junior golfer at Evansville Central. He says he plans to go to Illinois.
* And Sullivan grad Rhett Smith says he will enroll at Hillsdale in Michigan to play basketball.
On the links — A two-man scramble is slated this weekend at Geneva Hills. Contact the Kanizers about tee times.
Players from the area recently had good finishes in the Mid-Am Team Championship played at Brickyard Crossing.
Tom Jones and Chris Keen tied for 11th with rounds of 70 and 72 for 142. Dusty Jovanovich and Brett Windner of Avon tied for 25th with a 146, shooting 73 twice.
Tom-Cattin’ It — Two of the noted college players who say they will not turn pro are Gary Harris of Michigan State and Doug McDermott of Creighton.
* Former Indiana football coach Bill Mallory has been named to the MAC Hall of Fame. He coached at Miami of Ohio and Northern Illinois.
* Scott Rolen has made a major gift to IU baseball. The big leaguer from Jasper never played college sports after being drafted as a high school senior and lives in Bloomington.
* Dallas Mav Dirk Nowitzki has become the 17th player to score 25,000 points in the NBA.
* Tony Gaebel of South Vermillion recently competed in the Golden Gloves.
* Sullivan grad Rhagen Smith recently was named MVP in an all-star game played at Tecumseh. She scored 22 points for the winning team, coached by Sullivan coach Julie Meeks.
* Criss Beyers has resigned as boys basketball coach at Martinsville (Ind.) High School after one season. His team won a sectional title and was 13-10.
* Steve Lynch is the new boys basketball coach at Brownsburg. He had a record of 103-52 with a regional championship at Mount Vernon and once had been an assistant under Steve Alford at Missouri State.
He replaces Ronald Nored, who has joined Matthew Graves’ staff at South Alabama.
Tom Reck may be contacted by phone at (812) 232-3231, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by mail at 4284 S. Fifth St., Apt. 3, Terre Haute, IN 47802.