Summer sports were the first we were able to get back in action a year ago, and this year we expect to have the opportunity to have our summer sports seasons look much closer to normal. Regional tournaments are already scheduled in softball and golf. And teams are forming for softball and local programs have begun golf practices with an eye toward seasons starting after the State Summer Games.
Softball remains the second largest team sport on the SOKY calendar. Teams are now competing in local leagues and invitational tournaments in preparation for the regional tournaments in August.
The softball regular season consists of leagues in Louisville and central Kentucky with preliminary games being played in other areas, as well as a number of invitational tournaments throughout the state. Those lead up to a series of regional tournaments that qualify teams for the State Tournament in Bowling Green in September. Teams that do not reach the State Tournament can still make the trip to Bowling Green for the Team Skills Competition that is held in conjunction with the Tournament.
2021 Softball Schedule
August 7 – Region 1 Softball Tournament; Paducah
August 13-14 – Region 2 Softball Tournament; Georgetown
August 20-21 – Region 3 Softball Tournament; Louisville
September 10-12 -State Softball Tournament; Bowling Green
Golf can be complicated to learn and master, but like all Special Olympics sports, the SOKY golf program offers levels of play that anybody can enjoy and gives our athletes the opportunity to learn the game and progress at their own pace and ability. Competition in Kentucky comes at three levels.
The skills event tests each golfer’s ability at six basic golf shots – wood, iron, chip, pitch, long putt and short putt – with each participant scored on accuracy and, when appropriate, distance. Golfers are awarded points for each shot at each station and the highest score wins. All first-year participants are required to compete at the skills level.
More advanced Special Olympics golfers can compete in Unified golf. The Unified golf program pairs a Special Olympics athlete and a partner who doesn’t have a disability to train and compete in an alternate-shot format. Teams play by standard rules.
The most advanced golfers compete in individual stroke play, playing their own ball throughout a round.
The season consists of three regional tournaments. Golfers and Unified teams must turn in a minimum of three scores from practice rounds or events to compete in a regional tournament. Golfers must compete in at least one regional tournament to participate in the State Golf Tournament, but can compete in more than one regional tournament if they wish to. There will also be training clinics held during the summer in Lexington, Louisville and Northern Kentucky.
2021 Golf Schedule
July 11 – Northern Kentucky Regional Golf Tournament; Pioneer Golf Course, Independence
July 18 – Elizabethtown Regional Golf Tournament; Elizabethtown Country Club
July 26 – Western Kentucky Regional Golf Tournament; Miller Memorial Golf Course, Murray
August 22 – State Golf Tournament; Quail Chase Golf Course, Louisville
For information about any of our sports programs, contact Kim Satterwhite at [email protected].