By 1812Blockhouse

The Ohio Prep Sportswriters Association (OPSWA) has unveiled the winners of its annual writing and photography contest, following the association’s annual meeting. This prestigious event celebrates excellence in sports journalism, recognizing the top writers and photographers covering high school sports across Ohio.

Top Writers Recognized

Writer of the Year honors were awarded to three standout journalists:

  • Jeff Gilbert of the Dayton Daily News
  • Rob McCurdy of the Marion Star
  • Todd Stumpf of the Medina Weekly News

These journalists were celebrated for their exceptional contributions to high school sports coverage throughout the 2023 calendar year. Each winner demonstrated outstanding storytelling and reporting skills, capturing the essence of high school athletics in their respective regions.

Local Talent Shines

Richland County media sites also had writers who received notable recognition in the contest:

Division 1 – Daily Circulation over 10,000 and Websites

  • Game Stories
    • Tie-2nd Place: Curt Conrad, Richland Source
  • News Stories
    • 1st Place: Jake Furr, Mansfield News Journal
  • Columns
    • 1st Place: Curt Conrad, Richland Source
    • 2nd Place: Jake Furr, Mansfield News Journal
  • Division 1 Writer of the Year
    • Runner-up: Jake Furr, Mansfield News Journal

Judging Criteria and Process

The contest featured four writing categories in three divisions, categorized by the circulation size of the publications. Each category was judged by two OPSWA members from different divisions to ensure impartiality. Writers and photographers submitted three pieces of work per category, allowing judges to evaluate a comprehensive body of work.

Growing Membership and Support

OPSWA’s membership has grown to 218 writers and photographers statewide. Founded in 1972, the organization aims to support and enhance the coverage of high school sports in Ohio, while recognizing superior writing among sports journalists. In 2010, OPSWA partnered with the Ohio High School Athletic Association (OHSAA) to expand its reach, establishing a website and increasing its membership and recognition efforts.

Access to OPSWA Resources

For those interested in learning more about OPSWA or exploring the work of its members, the association’s website offers a wealth of information. The site includes the membership directory, officers’ information, hall of fame inductees, and various updates. It serves as a central hub for the association’s activities and achievements.

Visit the OPSWA website at to explore more about the organization and its members.

Source: OHSAA

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