Chad Clinger: Reflections on my first season as a sports reporter

It is a time for reflection as I sit here at my desk in the Galion Inquirer office on a chilly Tuesday morning.

I am now about two and a half months in as the sports reporter for the paper.

I can still remember how I felt late in July when editor Russ Kent called me up to offer me the position. How could I not say yes, two of my favorite things all rolled up into one job?

With postseason play right around the corner and some sports already wrapped up, I give to you a little bit of a recap of what we have gone through together in the sports world.

First, let’s review the new.

Football has always been a staple in the area, no matter how good or how bad. Galion head coach Matt Dick is now seven games into his first season of football at Galion High School. Sure, he hasn’t had the easiest of first seasons, but the Tigers take the field every week with determination and will. After winning big at home against Bucyrus in Dick’s first game, Galion has found themselves in a bit of a rut. The playoff runs of prior years will come to an end, sure, but the era has just started. Be patient, give it time. Other area teams, such as Crestline and Northmor have seen there share of ups and downs this 2016 season as well. Colonel Crawford could be in the hunt for a postseason birth. An observation, they are just kids out there on that field, the referees are doing the best that they can.

Another new for the area was the soccer program here in Galion. Both boys and girls teams took to fields all over Ohio in their inaugural season. Most of the players for the Tigers have little to none soccer experience prior to this year, and the fact that they gave it a try speaks volumes. There have been a few goals scored and the boys team even beat Gilead Christian. But again, be patient. Give it time. I personally think a soccer program is something that a community should rally behind. After all, it is the most popular sport in the world. You’ve done a great job athletes and so have you coach John Stewart and coach Eric Palmer.

The volleyball season is winding down for area teams, as well. It has been fun attending games again and enjoying the atmosphere as a kill is landed or a serve drops in for an ace. Galion Coach Jaime Valentine and her Tigers have kept every match competitive and are vying for a strong push headed to the postseason. Coach Kara Wright from Northmor appears to have a strong squad that could do some serious damage in the tournaments I look forward to continuing my match coverage into November.

When it comes to cross country, I can’t believe George Guins is still around. It has been nice to be in contact with a legend. Coach Bill Christman from Crestline, it was nice catching up with you as well. I know that cross country hasn’t gotten an abundance of coverage this season and I apologize. Remember, I am still new at this? I hear though that Colonel Crawford has some pretty good runners that I will keep an eye on late in October and early November.

The surprise of the year was the young ladies on the Galion tennis team. The group of freshmen and sophmores for coaches Bob Roesch and Terry Gribble made a very impressive turnaround this season. The trio of singles players were near the top of the conference in wins. Jalyn Oswald was the Mid-Ohio Athletic Conference champion at third singles. Katherine Talbott had a season to brag about as well. Kayley Gimbel will be competing in district play as a three seed on Thursday and was a second team MOAC player at first singles.

Galion High School golf also had its share of improvements this season. The boys team has a young man by the name of Jack McElligott that made it all the way to districts tournament in Findlay before his season was ended. Brevin Owens is the only season on the varsity squad that coach Bryce Lehman will not see on courses next fall. The girls team participated in their first ever invitational this year, saw all girls on the squad shoot their personal bests and shot the lowest team score in the young history of their program.

I have already started talking with some coaches for the winter sports season. I hope to be able to provide the best possible coverage for all sports for the area. My thought is that these student athletes deserve the credit that is due to them. As always, if there are any fundraisers or any other sports related stories out there, all of my contact info is listed above and below. Feel free to reach out to me and I will see what I can do. My goal is to entertain and inform, so help me to help you. Thank you for reading!

Galion’s Jack McElligott watches a good shot off the 11th Tee during tournament play at Red Hawk Run Golf in Findley on Thursday morning.
Walt Butler/Galion Inquirer’s Jack McElligott watches a good shot off the 11th Tee during tournament play at Red Hawk Run Golf in Findley on Thursday morning.
Walt Butler/Galion Inquirer

By Chad Clinger

[email protected]


Find Chad on Twitter @GalionSportsGuy

Reach Chad at 419-468-1117 x2048


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