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High School Notebook: Ex-Lions coach Fischer battling cancer
BY TAFT COGHILL JR.
Mark Fischer began to worry because he felt a bit under the weather. The former Louisa High School football coach is hardly ever sick, so he decided to get his illness checked out.
“I don’t even catch colds,” Fischer said. “So I had to figure out what the heck was going on.”
On Sept. 21, Fischer, 48, was diagnosed with multiple myeloma, a type of bone cancer.
Fischer, who has been the head coach at St. James High School in South Carolina the past two years, has vowed to fight.
“It hit me out of left field,” he said. “But since that day, we’ve been going 100 miles an hour fighting this thing.”
Fischer has missed practice time, but he hasn’t missed a game. He said his goal is to get back on the sidelines full-time. He’s received encouragement from the community near Myrtle Beach and in Virginia.
“The support from back home has made it so good,” Fischer said. “When you get put in a situation like this it’s very humbling to realize people like you.”
Fischer is still beloved in Louisa. He went 50–18 in six seasons (2005–10). He helped lead the Lions to the 2006 Group AA, Division 4 state championship game.
After Mineral was damaged by an earthquake in 2011, Fischer brought players from St. James with him to help rebuild the community.
He’s now undergoing chemotherapy, but said he’ll keep pushing.
“I’ve got a little cancer in me, but it’s no big deal,” he said. “It’s one of those things life hands you. I’m young and stubborn, so I plan on being here a while.”
A BOOST FOR FCS
Fredericksburg Christian School boys basketball coach Darren Berkley was wondering how to replace three starters from last year’s team.
Star guard Seth Allen is now a freshman at the University of Maryland. Backcourt mate Trey Rowser and standout forward Eric Shaw transferred to Middleburg Academy.
Berkley figured out at least one piece to the puzzle when Spotsylvania County resident Daryl Myers transferred from Oak Hill Academy.
Myers, a super-quick freshman point guard, was on the developmental team at Oak Hill. Still, he’s considered one of the nation’s top prospects his age.
“It’s definitely a blessing,” Berkley said. “I think he’ll be good for us. He can’t replace Seth, obviously. But we’re very excited about Daryl and the talent he brings.”
JM TO HONOR PAST
James Monroe football will honor its 1987 state championship team at halftime of its game on Friday against Caroline.
Veteran coach Rich Serbay has won four state titles, but the ’87 group is the only undefeated team he’s coached.
“It was so enjoyable to walk out on the field knowing you weren’t going to lose,” Serbay said. “That’s how good we were.”
This year’s version of the Yellow Jackets (5–0, 1–0 Battlefield District) has found a way to scrape together victories despite injuries. Serbay said third-string quarterback Jay Scroggins will make his second straight start on Friday. He said 2011 starter DeMontaz Brown, who suffered a preseason knee injury, will return for homecoming, Oct. 12 against Culpeper.
Taft Coghill Jr.: 540/374-5526