This years Ripley County Basketball Hall of Fame banquet was held Saturday night at the Middle School Commons in Batesville. There were 140 guests to welcome in the latest inductees. Some interesting highlights of the acceptance speeches include David Bradshaw, long-time baseball and basketball coach at Jac-Cen-Del, who reminisced about his encounters with Randy Combs and Scott Holdsworth who were also inductees. David played professional baseball in both the Montreal Expo and Pittsburgh Pirate organizations before embarking on his teaching and coaching career. He topped off his basketball career with a state championship at JCD. Randy Combs of Milan was on a state basketball championship team while a student at Vincennes High School. He and his brother were both long-time basketball coaches in Indiana. Randy is still coaching football at Milan and his brother is now a principal at Vincennes High School.Thomas Buck of Batesville revealed a couple funny incidents that kept him from being able to participate in his first two high school games. In one incident his mom packed his freshmen uniform instead of the reserve because she thought he looked better in te freshmen uniform. This resulted in a technical foul that cost the Bulldogs the game.Scott Holdsworth, a member of the Greensburg coaching staff, was inducted for his playing prowess while at South Ripley High School. He is currently an alternative school administrator in Greensburg and the head coach of their baseball program. He also was a varsity assistant for the two straight state championship Greensburg basketball teams.In tomorrow’s article I will list tidbits about the other inductees from this 2014 class.
Russia has recently announced that it will lift visa requirements for 18 countries. Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev signed a decree recently, allowing citizens of 18 countries visa-free travel to the Russian Far East starting August 2017.The list includes Algeria, Bahrain, Brunei, India, Iran, Qatar, China, North Korea, Kuwait, Morocco, Mexico, UAE, Oman, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Tunisia, Turkey and Japan.The new rule could dramatically increase the number of tourists to the region, according to the Ministry of Far East Development.Deputy Minister for the Development of the Far East, Pavel Volkov, said, “We’d like to see an increase in tourism to the region by at least 30%. Given the fact that every wealthy tourist spends at least $1,000 in the territory, we assume this will significantly increase the opportunities for the development of the region, trade turnover, and currency flows.”