Clear Fork Valley Athletics

Staff report

CLEAR FORK VALLEY — Two individuals and a team will be enshrined this September into the Clear Fork Valley Athletic Hall of Fame.

The ceremony will be Sept. 2 during Hall of Fame Weekend celebrations.

The two named are Kevin Gower, Clear Fork High School class of 1987; and Earl Fry, Bellville class of 1954.

The 1977-78 boys basketball team at Clear Fork High School also will be honored.

One of the Colts all time best running backs, Gower was a workhorse in coach Tom Sargent’s power running game. Fry was a center and middle linebacker for the successful Blue Jay football teams of coach Fred Martinelli in the early 1950s, and the 1977-78 Clear Fork boys’ basketball team, the first Colt team to make the regional tournament.

Gower was a big part of the Colts resurgence on the football field and became the school’s second 1,000 yard rusher in the fall of 1986. When Gower got the ball it was just a matter if the play was designed to go left or right or right up the middle. He once carried the ball for 20 consecutive plays.

Fry was a two way player for the Blue Jays and Martinelli says his quiet leadership was a major factor in the success of the 1953 Bellville football team, the first undefeated team at the school. He was the captain and played center and middle linebacker for the 8-0-1 Blue Jays. He later played at Wittenberg College and was head football coach at Urbana High School for two seasons and an assistant coach at a number of schools from 1960 to 1991.

The 1977-78 boys’ basketball team was (18-5) and advanced to the regional semi finals beating Mansfield Malabar (57-56) to win the sectional title, Willard (65-52) in the district semis and Wynford (63-55) for the Class AA district title. The team featured four members of the HOF in Doug Ute (CF ’80,) Jay Guth (CF ’79,) Jay Brokaw (CF ’79,) and Chuck Golden (CF ’79.) They were cornerstone of what made Clear Fork one of the most successful boys’ basketball teams in North Central Ohio from mid 70’s to the mid 80’s.

Staff report