Oneonta senor pitcher Tanner Russin pitched a four-hit game for Oneonta, but Chenango Forks capitalized on three Yellowjacket errors to win a Southern Tier Athletic Conference baseball game Friday, May 21, at Joe Hughes Field in Oneonta.
Zack Young led the Blue Devils with two hits.
Forks pitcher Grady Stark got the win, giving up five hits.
Aidan Breakey had two of Oneonta’s hits, including an RBI single in the first.
COOPERSTOWN – When OHS retired athletic director Joe Hughes discovered his former teammate, 16-season MLB shortstop Ozzie Guillén was in Cooperstown last weekend, he and wife Jane jumped in the car and drove up.
“He was there to see Harold Baines get inducted in the Hall of Fame,” said Hughes, who continues as Oneonta Outlaws manager this season. “So, we went over to where he was signing autographs on Main Street and talked for 20 to 30 minutes. It was great seeing him again.”
Hughes and Guillén met 38 years ago when they played together on a Venezuelan professional baseball team in Valera, a small town in the western part of the country.
ONEONTA – Two OHS athletic directors – the current one, Joe Hughes, and a legendary one, Tony Drago – presented the annual Tony Drago Tournament trophy Saturday, Dec. 1, to the Lady Yellowjackets.They realized they were marking two milestones. One, it will be Joe Hughes’ last: He is retiring in June. Two, Tony Drago was marking his namesake tournament’s 60th anniversary.
“It’s bittersweet,” said Hughes. “There was no better way to go out than with the OHS girls’ win. Presenting the trophy with Tony to them was an honor.
“I’ve been blessed to have had such a good job and worked with such good people,” he said. “Coaches, students, directors, and of course, Tony.”
Hughes and Drago, who retired as OHS athletic director in 1984, share more than just that title.
Their families have been close since at least the late 1930s, when Drago and Hughes’ dad, Bill, attended OHS together. Tony was best man at Bill’s wedding, and a second father to Joe. “Joe is my son,” Drago declared. “He’s a good kid.”
As for Joe Hughes, “I followed in Drago’s footsteps.”
DA-duh … DA-duh … DA-duh-DA-duh-DA-du-DA-duh. Beneath the placid surface of the OHS swimming pool lies something sinister.
“All the mechanical systems are in tough shape,” said David Rowley, former interim school superintendent. “The vents, the filter, the pumps, the main drain line, the piping system and the timer for swim meets.”
The pool, which was built for the 1979-80 school year, used to be part of the phys-ed curriculum and site of lifeguard training programs.
“It was a great opportunity for our kids to get their certification and go work at the pools or Gilbert Lake,” said Joe Hughes, OHS athletic director. “Swimming is a lifelong skill; Everyone should know how, for fun and safety, and we’d like to keep this pool operational.”
Years of wear and tear have reduced the pool’s usage, and now it’s only used for the Lady Yellowjackets modified and varsity swim team practice and meets. “It’s like an old car,” said Hughes. “You only drive it a little bit so you don’t run it into the ground.”
Rowley graduated from OHS in 1968, before the pool was built, but when he toured the site as interim superintendent, he was disheartened by what he saw. “It’s a shame that we’re in this situation,” he said.
And though repairs are estimated to total $1.4 million, he intends to raise the local share – $400,000 – so as not to burden taxpayers. Tuesday, June 24, Rowley held a rally at the pool to kick off the fundraising campaign. “It’s a lot of money,” he said, “but we want it to be a project Oneonta will be supportive of.”
The voters will have to formally authorize the establishment of the project’s reserve fund at a vote on from noon-9 p.m. Tuesday, July 8. The state will pay the remaining costs, and already, $70,000 has been raised.
Renovated, it won’t just be the high school students who use it. “We want to make it a community resource,” said Rowley. “The YMCA’s swim team has to practice and hold their swim meets in Sidney, they’re paying the Sidney school district for their use.”
Both Rowley and Hughes hope the Family Y will collaborate on usage of the OHS swimming pools, as well as open up community events, such as early morning swims or classes. “The options are numerous,” said Hughes.
The girls swim team – as well as the newly revived boys swim team – will use the pool as is for the remaining 2014-2015 season, and the renovations are slated to begin in summer 2015. “I really applaud David Rowley and the citizens who’ve stepped up to help us out,” said Hughes. “The kids are the beneficiaries, and that’s why we do this. We’re going to dive right in.”