The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Sports

March 21, 2013

A Don McCormack column: Kudlock was quite a player, too

Paying another visit to the variety store...

Mailbag lite

In this space the other day, I wrote a bit about the passing of Steve Kudlock, who died last Friday at age 68.

Wednesday, among the messages in my inbox was one from Mike Bento.

Since Bento, who was the 1980 Star Beacon Ashtabula County Player of the Year in baseball as a senior at St. John, had his photo included in the excellent feature our Vince Peluso penned on Bill Schmidt’s return to coaching, I figured that would be the subject matter.

As usual, I was incorrect. Following, is the message Bento sent my way:

Don:

I was saddened to read the news of the passing of Steve Kudlock.

I played quite a few games against Steve in the old Twilight League. We had some good teams, most of us were playing in college, but we always knew where Steve was on the field. Though he was in his late thirties at the time, he could do it all. He could change a game with one swing.

I later had the privilege of playing a few games with him for the Springfield Merchants in the mid-eighties. Though he was in the twilight of his career, he did anything to help the team. He was a true sportsman.

It appears form your article you never got to see him play. It’s a shame.

You missed one of the best.

Mike Bento

A very nice tribute to a good guy, Mike. Very well said. Thank you.

Going to Church

Another subject touched on in this space last week — assistant coach Tom Church’s Florida Southern College Moccasins hosting the Division II South Regional men’s basketball tournament — will be extended.

Church, a 1998 Conneaut graduate who was the Star Beacon Ashtabula County Player of the Year in basketball for coach Kent Houston’s Spartans as a senior, and the rest of the Mocs advanced to the Elite Eight with a 90-88 triumph against ninth-ranked Alabama-Huntsville on Tuesday night.

With that triumph, FSC (27-5) moves on to storied Freedom Hall, home of top-seed in the men’s Division I NCAA Tournament, the Louisville Cardinals.

There, the Moccasins will tangle with defending national champion Western Washington (30-2) in the third of four national quarterfinals at 6 p.m.

Western Washington earned a repeat ticket to the Elite Eight with a 62-58 win against Seattle Pacific in the West Regional title game late Tuesday night in Bellingham, Wash.

The winner of the Florida Southern-Western Washington clash will move to the play the survivor of a quarterfinal between Drury (28-4) and USC Aiken (25-7) in a national semifinal Saturday at 2:30 p.m.

All four of the quarterfinal games will be broadcast on the web at www.ncaa.com, with the semifinals and championship game being broadcast nationally by CBS.

Just the facts...

Area high school spring sports coaches and athletic directors are reminded preseason information packets are due back in our hands here at the Star Beacon by Friday.

They can be sent via email to sports@starbeacon.com or fax at 998-7938.

McCormack is the sports editor of the Star Beacon. Reach him at donmac@suite224.net.

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