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Mustangs Debut First Annual Gridiron Greats Golf Tournament
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When the Oakdale High football team kicks off the 2009 season in early September it will likely be five or six thousand people filling the stadium making noise to support their squad, yet the official kick-off to the season will be Aug. 3 when the team hosts ‘The First Annual Oakdale High School Football Grid Iron Greats Golf Classic’ at the Oakdale Golf and Country Club.
Tournament organizers have given players and Mustang supporters alike an opportunity to play on one of the highly regarded courses in the Central Valley, while making a considerable donation to a well-known group of athletes this community supports.
“This tournament is obviously for the people who are attached to Oakdale football,” committee member Dave Derby said. “We’ve got such a strong community as it is where we can fill up the stadium by the thousands; it’s kind of an amazing thing in comparison to some of the other high schools.”
Oakdale faithful have responded in great numbers for this fundraiser as well and their support could never go unnoticed.
“We certainly are getting some good support,” Derby continued. “From those who are tied to the program, whether they’ve had kids in the program or have kids in the program. Businesses in the community have helped a great deal as well.
“They all just want to help out good kids.”
Participants are flocking to the opportunity to get in some tee time at Oakdale Golf and Country Club and spend the day with a host of Oakdale football regulars as well as one of the National Football League greats who will be playing 18 holes in the tournament’s inaugural running.
Longtime Oakland Raider legend Daryle Lamonica will be participating in the first annual gridiron greats tournament. Lamonica, who played in Super Bowl II against NFL immortal Vince Lombardi, will be quarterbacking a foursome in the tournament as well as donating a few signed lithographs to assist the Mustangs’ fundraising.
“I got a chance to meet Daryle several years ago,” Derby said. “He’s just a real genuine guy and has always been real helpful, so he’s decided to come out to Oakdale and play with us.”
With a little less than a month remaining for final preparations the tournament is seemingly in stride to go off without a hitch, thanks largely in part to the effort put forth from all of the tournament’s committee members.
“I think this has been like most golf tournaments,” committee member Jeff Sceville said. “In the planning stages it takes a lot of work to pull them off. Everything from getting sponsorships, getting people to commit to play; those things have been the big deal in getting this tournament going.”
The hard work will hopefully pay off in a perfectly run tournament, focused on one thing and that’s helping the Mustangs’ football program raise some money. Foursomes are still available as are a couple of sponsorship opportunities.
“Players who commit can get a chance to enjoy the nicest country club in the area,” Oakdale head coach Trent Merzon said. “And they’ll get to surround themselves with quality people as well as get a chance to support Mustang football.”