Katie and her team played outstanding and won by about 20 points. The Knights are fun to watch, and all of the players contribute to each game.
During halftime, athletic director Steve Downing handed out some awards to Marian athletes from other sports. As I watched his presentation, I started remembering some things about Downing, and that made me smile.
As I was departing the game, I walked past the athletic office. The door was open, and I saw someone talking with Steve Downing. I sat down in the lobby and waited until his office had cleared out before entering and being greeted by him.
I handed him one of my Southsider Voice business cards and introduced myself. Our conversation started with me saying something that I was sure would cause a puzzled look to form on his face. I told him that I was fairly certain that many years back I had played basketball on his team and against him. He had no idea what I was talking about.
I then uttered the words “Edgewood Grade School,” which allowed the light bulb to shine over his head and that great big smile to show up.
Steve and his good friend and teammate George McGinnis traveled down to Edgewood from their homes near Washington High School to play on the many asphalt courts surrounding our grade school. They led the 1964-65 Washington team to the state basketball championship before playing for Indiana University and at the professional level.
The courts attracted hundreds of players when the weather was nice. On occasion I was picked to be on one of the three-man teams. My assignment was always the same: I passed the ball in bounds to one of my teammates and got the heck out of the way.
A fellow named Kenny Davis walked into the office, and he smiled broadly when hearing Edgewood mentioned. I told them about my dad’s Sunoco service station and the fact that lots of the players walked over to it and bought cold soft drinks. Kenny laughed and told me that he remembered the station.
Steve told me that George was in Florida. I explained to Steve and Kenny that George and I once owned industrial supply businesses in Indianapolis. Steve then pointed out that George and I had two connections: Edgewood basketball and nuts and bolts. I also had two connections with Steve Downing: Edgewood basketball and Katie Geralds.
A few days later I dropped off a copy of the picture below.
Basketball connects a lot of folks in many ways here in Indiana. I love it.
Shonk is a 1960 graduate of Southport High School, a ’63 grad of Indiana Central College (now the University of Indianapolis) and a retired bus driver from Beech Grove Schools.