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THE REVIEW: Sending off a legend

It was Sept. 6, 1974. The Montreal Expos were tied at the top of the second inning against the hosting Pittsburgh Pirates when a 20-year-old third baseman stepped to the plate for the Expos. In three at-bats that day, the right-hander may have only posted a single hit in his professional debut, but little did he know that his future in the game of baseball would surpass anything he was expecting.

Greenville’s Nathan Larson, middle, takes part in on-field activities prior to the Detroit Lions game at Ford Field on Thursday. Larson was there for the #MiKidsCan Play Like a Lions Challenge. - Courtesy photo

Greenville kid takes to field prior to Lions win

The Detroit Lions took to the field to open its preseason football schedule at Ford Field on Thursday. Also taking the field, prior to the Lions 23-3 win over the Jets, was Greenville 7-year-old Nathan Larson.

Greenville’s Leah Somerfield, right, turns to the basket for a shot during a game last year for Oakland.  - Courtesy photo/Leah Somerfield

Somerfield loves Oakland, ready for sophomore year

Oakland University women’s basketball player Leah Somerfield made a big jump from high school girls basketball to Division 1 women’s college basketball. It was an interesting transition for the Greenville graduate.

Greenville junior Keegan Cossou, at right, catches a pass during the first two-a-day football practice on Monday. - Daily News/Bruce Bentley

Greenville’s Cossou a top high school football recruit

Central Michigan and Toledo have already extended scholarship offers. More are expected to come. It’s safe to say, Greenville junior Keegan Cossou is one of the best high school football prospects in the class of 2017.

Greenville runs a play during the first two-a-day practice at Legacy Field on Monday. The Yellow Jackets open the season at Belding on Aug. 27. - Daily News/Bruce Bentley

Greenville begins season prep with first practice

With the start of two-a-days for football players around the state, the first game of the season in three weeks serves as the light at the end of the tunnel. On a warm, humid Monday afternoon, it was popsicles serving as that light for the Greenville Yellow Jackets after its first day of practice.

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Wednesday big day for local volleyball players

The first day of practice for high school volleyball player may determine whether there will be a second day for that player. All the local high schools will have tryouts when the first day of practice comes and the local coaches have some things they are looking for in a varsity player.

Belding trainer Heidi Wilker, left, checks on an injured Grand Rapids West Catholic football player. - In Action Photography/Joe Veselenak

Local schools join football concussion program

Three local schools will be taking part in a program designed to help athletes with concussions. The pilot program, which is being administered through the Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA), involves 70 schools, including Belding, Central Montcalm and Greenville. The program will help trainers diagnose concussions and help track athlete progress in recovering from concussions, according to Belding athletic trainer Heidi Wilker.

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THE REVIEW: Voelker’s talent not on radar

Every organization has one. That inconspicuous talent who, for one reason or another seems to stay off the radar, despite their success. For Erie Seawolves closer Paul Voelker, it’s never been a desire for excessive attention. As with any incoming draftee, the goal has remained the same for Voelker; perform, win, advance, and repeat. The 10th round selection out of Dallas Baptist University in the 2014 Detroit Tigers draft class may not meet the visual criteria of a pitching blue print, but he’s discovered a way to bypass assumption and has entered this season setting a bar that only seems to rise on a game by game basis.

Randy Cairns of Gowen does a 536-pound deadlift at a competition in 2010. - Courtesy photo

Gowen powerlifter winning medals

Just eight years ago, Randy Cairns started doing powerlifting competitions. It’s taken him all over the world, where he has been very successful. Cairns, 49, of Gowen, has a mantle full of trophies from all over the world.

Greenville graduate Zane Weaver (65) looks to the sideline with the rest of the Northern Michigan offensive line for a play during a game at Ferris State University in 2013.

Greenville’s Weaver set to begin final season at Northern Michigan

Zane Weaver is ready to get back on the football field. It’s been nearly two years since the 2011 Greenville High School graduate was able to strap on a Northern Michigan University (NMU) football helmet outside of practice.