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High School Notebook: Project will impact Indians’ programs

BY TAFT COGHILL JR.

THE FREE LANCE-STAR

Wes Bergazzi couldn’t attend the Stafford County School Board meeting Tuesday night. But the implications from what was decided will affect the Stafford High School athletic director.

The Indians will have to play all 10 of their games next season on the road while construction on a new school takes place.

“We’re just starting to formulate the process for all of that,” Bergazzi said Wednesday. “We’re putting together a plan that would reach out and start a dialogue with the other schools. We’re still digesting this and trying to put it all together.”

Bergazzi said the lack of home football games could affect other sports at the school because “football revenues run our athletic program.”

Bergazzi isn’t completely unfamiliar with ways to earn funds without home games. Potomac High School in Woodbridge, played all road games in 2012. The Panthers visited Stafford for one of their “home” games. Bergazzi said the Indians split ticket sales evenly with Potomac.

“I don’t know if that’s what we’ll do,” Bergazzi said.

Football coach Chad Lewis said the possibility of playing some home games at King George High School was brought up in preliminary discussions among Stafford’s staff. He said they haven’t contacted the Foxes, who opened an artificial-turf stadium in September 2012.

Bergazzi said forgoing home games should last only one year. But as construction continues for three years, Stafford will have to find an alternative site for home contests.

The Indians were pleased with one outcome from the School Board meeting. Lewis said he’s thankful the board voted to allow the freshman, junior varsity and varsity programs to practice at the school’s stadium during construction.

Lewis said other coaches told him the logistics of traveling to another site was “the worst experience they’ve ever had.”

“I wouldn’t necessarily say it’s a good tradeoff to lose home games,” Lewis said. “We have three teams to manage and they have to share one 100-yard field. But what it does is it allows the students to stay onsite and get the tutoring they need.

“We don’t have to travel and take equipment from one school to another, and have kids riding in cars together. I didn’t feel comfortable with that for one year, let alone three.”

KEYDETS NAB A PAIR

A group of parents and lacrosse enthusiasts have established club programs in four of Spotsylvania County’s five high schools.

So when Massaponax junior Hunter Callan and Riverbend senior Andrew Givens recently committed to Virginia Military Institute, it made the push to grow the sport seem worthwhile.

Callan is a standout attackman for the Panthers. Givens is a key midfielder for the Bears.

“It was extremely well worth it,” said Shawn Callan, who is Hunter’s father and an assistant coach at Massaponax. “More kids will eventually have opportunities that they never had before. I can’t thank the administration enough for working with the lacrosse community in order to get this to happen.”

Shawn Callan said the next step is for the Spotsylvania County programs to become members of the Virginia High School League.

He said lacrosse has grown “140 percent” nationwide in the last 10 years, but Spotsylvania was getting left behind until last year when Massaponax and Riverbend started programs. Chancellor and Courtland will field teams this spring.

VOLUNTEERS OFFER MOSS

Chancellor junior offensive lineman Steven Moss recently picked another Football Bowl Subdivision scholarship offer.

Tennessee is the latest school to enter the chase for the 6-foot-4, 270-pound Moss, who now has 16 scholarship offers. Moss also took an unofficial visit to Notre Dame earlier this month, but the Fighting Irish have yet to offer a scholarship.

Moss was a first-team all-Battlefield District and All-Area selection as a right tackle last season.

BEAR ON THE MEND

Riverbend athletic director Tim Stimmell has been out the past two weeks on medical leave. Bears wrestling coach Josh Johnson has served as the interim athletic director in his absence.

Stimmell said Wednesday that a doctor’s appointment on Friday will determine if he can return to his position next week or remain out for another week.

Taft Coghill Jr.: 540/374-5526

tcoghill@freelancestar.com

Permalink: http://news.fredericksburg.com/sports/2013/01/31/high-school-notebook-project-will-impact-indians-programs/

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