FLS Varsity

FLS Varsity brings you the scores, stats and stories from Fredericksburg-area high school sports.

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HIGH SCHOOL NOTEBOOK: Claude Tyler back on Bears’ bench

A season as the interim girls basketball coach at Spotsylvania motivated Claude Tyler to return to the sidelines full time.

Tyler has been hired as the new coach at Riverbend, replacing Scott Thomas.

Tyler’s brother, Warren Tyler, is currently the Knights’ head coach but missed last season because of medical reasons. Warren Tyler is expected to return next season.

Claude Tyler helped lead Spotsylvania to the Conference 27 regular season and tournament titles in 2013–14.

“I believe last year working at Spotsy and filling in, I got that passion and that drive back,” Claude Tyler said. “It just showed me how much I love coaching.”

This will be Tyler’s second stint with the Bears. He was Riverbend’s coach when the school opened in the 2004–05 season after an eight-year run at Spotsylvania.

During his four-year stint at Riverbend, Tyler guided the Bears to three Battlefield District regular season and tournament titles and a Commonwealth District regular-season championship.

After departing the Bears, Tyler had brief stints as Spotsylvania’s boys basketball coach and the head girls coach at Fredericksburg Christian School.

“My plan is to take this job and keep it until it’s time for me to completely retire,” Tyler said. “But it’s hard to say how things will work out in a year or two.”


The Virginia High School Coaches Association held its annual all-star games last week at Liberty University.

Former Colonial Forge volleyball standout Hope Kelley was named the Most Valuable Player for the East team in its 3–1 (25-22, 25-27, 25-23, 25-16) win over the West. Kelly recorded 10 kills and seven digs.

The East also won the football game, 14–7 over the West. Former James Monroe offensive lineman Troy Thomas was elected one of four captains for the East. JM coach Rich Serbay directed the offensive line in practice all week.

Thomas and Serbay were joined by Colonial Forge graduates Malik Shabazz, a defensive back, and James Tyler, a linebacker, on the East. Ethan Upperco (Chancellor) stood out at linebacker for the West, Serbay said.

“It was really nice for the area to have four kids in there and they all played well,” Serbay said.


JM grad James McFadden was selected for the all-star game but didn’t play after undergoing shoulder surgery. Serbay said McFadden is preparing to begin his career at Shenandoah University. Serbay said the Hornets like McFadden’s versatility but believe he will blossom into an outside linebacker.

McFadden was an all-Conference 27 selection at linebacker last season.


First-year Brooke Point coach Tommy Buzzo regularly had 100 or more kids attend his football camp at Liberty High School when he directed the program from 2002–11.

Buzzo is seeking a similar turnout at Brooke Point but is off to a slow start. The camp, which will be held for children ages 5–15, begins next Monday and lasts through Wednesday. The cost is $70.

Buzzo and his entire staff will serve as instructors, with a helping hand from Brooke Point players.

“We’re truly going to coach them,” Buzzo said. “This is not to baby-sit.”

Former Washington Redskins Pro Bowl kick returner Mike Nelms, who lives in Spotsylvania, will serve as a guest speaker.


Caroline grad and former girls basketball standout Bo Hayes will continue her career at Jefferson College, a junior college in Missouri, Cavaliers head coach Tim Marshall said.

Hayes was a 5-foot-11 post player for the Cavaliers but may play small forward in college. She was a second-team all-Conference 20 selection last season and third-team All-Area, averaging 12.3 points per game.

“I think she’s going to play the 3 which is going to be a challenge for her,” Marshall said. “But I seriously feel she is capable of doing it.”


Katie Sell, a rising senior swimming standout at Mountain View, has been selected for the 2013–14 National USA Swimming Scholastic All-American Team. To be eligible for the honor, swimmers must have achieved a time equal to a USA Junior National bonus mark and maintain at least a 3.5 GPA last school year.


Five Fredericksburg-area girls participated in the recent 2014 Brine National Lacrosse Classic in Maryland. Riverbend’s Amanda Fennell scored a goal for the Red team in its 8–8 tie with the White squad.

Taft Coghill Jr.: 540/374-5526