Six days. That's all the time the Oak Park Youth Baseball/Softball House League All-Stars in the girls'14U age division essentially had together in terms of practice time before embarking on their impressive summer run.
Unless you're a member of the Oak Park and River Forest High School baseball or softball teams, your best bet to learn about these sports the "Oak Park way," might be to head out to 3100 S. 25th Avenue in Broadview. That's the home of STRIKES! Baseball & Softball Academy, owned by former OPRF baseball star Scott Nelson.
OPRF senior quarterback Lloyd Yates can't wait for the high school regular season to start. That anticipation of opening day applies on two levels now as the dual-threat signal caller has committed to play college football for Northwestern and head coach Pat Fitzgerald.
While almost every high school football coach in the state of Illinois sees some value participating in 7-on-7 scrimmages against other teams during the offseason, the long-term benefits are open to debate.
I suppose any time OPRF and Fenwick square off in an athletic event, that's the best matchup (and rivalry) in town. In over a decade and change of area sports coverage, I've also discovered that the annual baseball series between OPRF and Lyons Township is about as good as it gets.
On Saturday I attended my first, "The Race That's Good For Life" annual race and I must say I was extremely impressed by the entire experience. A record crowd turned out to support Oak Park's annual race. There were races for men, women and kids and a feeling of fellowship, fun and plenty of competitive running permeated the race headquarters scene at OPRF.