Diamond 9: Glendale’s Brad Simmons strikes the right tone

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When it comes to baseball stories, they are a lot like fishing stories – heavy on entertainment, with some truth maybe sprinkled in somewhere. Maybe. Exhibit A is Brad Simmons, a former Glendale High School pitching standout who recently took a seat in the dugout of his old stomping grounds and reminisced about his long-ago… Read more »

Diamond 9: Ball fields became 2nd home for Tim Blasi

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He burned up under the sun and burned up his summers playing baseball because, well, that’s what kids did the 1970s in Springfield. And the evenings? For Tim Blasi, was there anywhere else to be? “I grew up at Fassnight Park with the AAA softball. That was the only show in town,” Blasi proudly says…. Read more »

Diamond 9: Softballer Crumpley-Bluebaum blazed her own trail

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Looking back, sure, Marionville native Janice Crumpley-Bluebaum wonders what might have been had high schools of the late 1960s offered softball for girls. However, in what’s a terrific reminder about the value of fighting through roadblocks, Crumpley-Bluebaum still found a way to enjoy the sport she loved. The southwest Missouri farm girl became a fixture… Read more »

Diamond 9: Humansville, SBU well-armed with Burrell

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In some towns, kids who love baseball have no choice but to ride their bikes to the other side of town just to find a ball field. So imagine Jack Burrell’s childhood. “I grew up in Humansville, and (baseball) was all there was. We played all the time,” said Burrell, now working for Ozarks Coca-Cola/Dr… Read more »

Diamond 9: Caitlin Chapin led Ozark’s softball rise

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All Caitlin Chapin wanted to do in fast-pitch softball was help raise the profile of the Ozark High School program. She and her teammates made it happen, as in the fall of 2007 the Lady Tigers reached the program’s first final four. “When we first started, we were playing in shorts and playing in little… Read more »

Hall honors Burnett, Lady Bears, Phillips, Reynolds

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SPRINGFIELD — The Missouri Sports Hall of Fame honored former Missouri State University women’s basketball coach Cheryl Burnett as a Missouri Sports Legend during its second annual Women in Sports Luncheon presented by the Bee Payne-Stewart Foundation on Monday at the Ramada Oasis Convention Center. Additionally, the Hall inducted the Lady Bears’ 1992 and 2001… Read more »

Inductee series: From the Ozarks to the LPGA, Reynolds had game

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Every success story has its starting point. For Cathy Reynolds, one might assume that her golf game was developed on lush grounds in sunny Florida or a picturesque seaside California locale. However, years before she would spend 17 seasons on the Ladies Professional Golf Association Tour, Reynolds could be found in the Ozarks and specifically… Read more »