DARKE COUNTY – Two athletes who have started off their senior years very strong are this week’s Daily Advocate athletes of the week.
This week’s Daily Advocate athletes of the week are Arcanum girls cross country runner Marcy Bradshaw and Greenville football player Logan Eldridge.
Bradshaw ran a season-best mark of 20:20.7 last week at the Cedarville Invitational, finishing 10th overall in a field of almost 300 girls. That time is third best among all Darke County girls and just 1.5 seconds behind Versailles’ Kara Spitzer for second place in the county.
“I think it’s awesome,” Arcanum cross country coach Chris Kessler said. “It’s really exciting to see how motivated she is to keep improving. She’s just a great athlete to be on your team.”
Last year Bradshaw set an Arcanum school record with a time of 19:39. The Arcanum senior is running 27 seconds faster now than she was at this point last season so if she can keep dropping time she could break her own school record.
“She’s running so much better where she is now than where she was last year at the same time,” Kessler said. “I know she’ll break her own school record.”
Bradshaw is a hard worker, which has allowed her to continue improving throughout her career. She’s also a great leader and role model for her teammates.
“She’s practicing really hard,” Kessler said. “She actually runs with the boys to keep herself moving.”
The Arcanum runner is focused on returning to the Ohio High School Athletic Conference state cross country meet, which she qualified for last year as a junior.
“It’s her senior year and she want to do well, wants to make it back to state,” Kessler said.
Eldridge leads all Darke County football players with 440 rushing yards this season. His rushing total also is fifth best in the entire Greater Western Ohio Conference.
Through the first four weeks of the season Eldridge accounted for more than 46 percent of Greenville’s total offense. He put up back-to-back 100 yard games in victories against Urbana and Stebbins, including a season-high 132 yards against Stebbins.
“To some degree we’ve got to be careful with how much we use him too early, but he’s a really good running back,” Greenville football coach Aaron Shaffer said following Greenville’s win against Stebbins. “He’s powerful, he’s got speed, he’s got great vision, but some of that you have to give credit to the offensive line and the blocking backs, too. We’re not a one-man show, but he’s definitely one of the big ones.”
The Greenville senior has run for a touchdown in each of Greenville’s first four games including three against Urbana in week three. His six rushing touchdowns are fourth best in the GWOC this year.
“He’s run the ball well so far this year,” Shaffer said after the win against Urbana. “We’ve got to keep finding ways to get the ball in his hands to make sure that we’re productive offensively.”
Eldridge also stars on defense as a linebacker for the Green Wave and is fourth in Darke County with 35 tackles through four weeks. He also has recovered two fumbles and has half a sack.
With Eldridge’s leadership, Greenville has started the 2016 season with a 3-1 record. That’s the Wave’s best start since joining the GWOC in 2010.
Kyle Shaner may be reached at 937-569-4316. Follow me on Twitter @KShanerAdvocate or get updates on Facebook by searching Darke County Sports or Advocate 360. For more features online go to dailyadvocate.com.