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SPEAKING OF SPORTS

January 25, 2013
Richmond High School



SPEAKING OF SPORTS

Troy Derengowski

The Richmond Boys and Girls basketball teams are in action tonight against the Marion Giants.  The boys play at Marion while the girls play at home.  Joe Luce will make his second trip to Marion since leaving the Giants program.   I will be curious to see if the hard feelings have subsided with the Giants fans for Luce leaving for another NCC school.   Richmond beat Marion last season 59-55.   The girls team will be looking for momentum starting tonight since the sectional tournament begins in the next two weeks.  Marion is a very athletic team coming into the Tiernan Center tonight so Richmond will have to play well and cut down on the turnovers in order to win.   Richmond’s senior night has been changed to January 31st against Guerin Catholic.   The tournament draw will be Sunday.

The game to watch in the NCC tonight will be Kokomo at Anderson.  Both teams are 3-0 in the NCC and 12-2 overall.   Also tonight, Muncie Central is at Huntington North and New Castle travels to Logansport.

Around the area, Hagerstown will look to run their winning streak to 14 on the season as the Tigers play at Union City and Northeastern has a big TEC match-up at Lincoln. 

I was extremely happy to get the news on Earlham getting a new baseball complex.  Steve Sakosits has done a great job turning that program around in a short amount of time.   Earlham is looking more and more like they will begin to be competitive in the HCAC because of their efforts to improve their facilities.  Earlham now has a great basketball facility, a great football stadium and now baseball will be first class.   I would like to see the men’s and women’s soccer teams get a stadium to play in.  They are always competitive in the HCAC and Roy Messer deserves a nice place to play because of his dedication to the college and because Shane Meridith is an excellent coach. 

Speaking of facilities, Richmond will have to address their football, tennis, track and soccer venues.  The reason is simple….they are falling apart or they aren’t up to date.  Let’s start with football.   Most fans who follow RHS football know the field at Lyboult Field is in serious need of restoration.  Year after year several teams play at Lyboult (varsity, JV, middle school and HUB), only to see the field deteriorate to the point it is unacceptable to play on.  Huge holes and dead areas where grass can’t grow scatter the field and make it dangerous for players to play on.  For a school this size, this is unacceptable!     The problem can’t continue to be ignored because someone is going to get hurt.   By the way, the old concrete bleachers are dangerous too when they get slippery.  Plus, have you sat on those bleachers for any length of time?

The track around the football field is also an embarrassment.   There are cracks forming everywhere to the point it too is dangerous.  And just in case you didn’t know, the track program can’t run a sectional meet there because there are only seven lanes.  I wouldn’t run a meet there anyway because of its condition.

The tennis courts may have more cracks than the track.  Every time it rains, the water seeps from under the courts and forms on the surface, making them unusable.   By the way, the cracks are getting bigger every year.  How can a coach get young players interested in tennis if the facilities are crumbling before their eyes?

The soccer fields at Freeman Park are also to the point they are becoming a problem.  Walk on the field sometime and you will understand what I mean.  Add to that there are no acceptable bathrooms, concessions, locker rooms available!  And no press box either!!!    The parking is a challenge when a lot of fans come to see the Red Devils play. 

People in Richmond need to realize that these student/athletes deserve better that what they are getting.  I am not saying we should improve just to make things look better.  I am saying that these facilities are dangerous, outdated and embarrassing for a community that is supposed to be a proud sports community.   We are eventually going to have to upgrade so do we pay now or pay latter when it may cost more?

 Finally, if you are tired of the cold weather just remember, the pitcher and catchers in major league baseball will report in February and then the exhibition season starts in March.   Spring is almost here!!!


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