Renovated Benicia High School stadium officially open – Benicia Herald

By Nick Sestanovich

It is finally here. After more than three years of planning, discussing and numerous construction delays, Benicia High School’s stadium is open for play, following a grand opening ceremony Thursday.

In 2014, Benicia residents voted to approve Measure S, a ballot initiative aimed at providing $49.6 million in bond funding for improvements at Benicia Unified School District’s seven schools. One of the largest projects to be funded by the initiative was the renovation of Benicia High’s George Drolette Stadium, which was constructed around 1966. The renovation of the stadium, which consists of a football and soccer field as well as a track, was expected to be completed in Oct. 2016 but due to various delays— including one of the Bay Area’s rainiest winter seasons in years— the construction kept getting pushed back. Now the field is ready for play, and the school celebrated with a ribbon cutting Thursday.

The stadium boasts a number of new features including aluminum bleachers that can seat up to 3,300 people, an 8-lane all-weather track, upgraded lighting, a new concession stand relocated to the front of the stadium, a “memory brick” circle emblazoned with the names of past and present Benicia High Schoolers, and a new entryway with signage welcoming Panthers. The only element remaining from the previous stadium was the scoreboard.

Source: Renovated Benicia High School stadium officially open

New Drolette Stadium ready to shine on Friday night – Times Herald

By Thomas Gase

Times-Herald sports staff Michele Drolette was born in 1954 in the middle of George Drolette’s 21-year run at Benicia High School.

His daughter therefore does not necessarily recall all of the X’s and O’s of her father’s legendary football career with the Panthers. She does, however, know how everyone remembers her dad.

“People come and go and sometimes people pass away and you don’t always recall that much about them but people still tell stories about my dad,” said Michele, who still lives in Benicia. “People really loved him and had a fondness for him. It’s really amazing to me.”

 

Source: New Drolette Stadium ready to shine on Friday night

Will C. Wood, Vanden football games postponed – The Reporter

By Michael Morris

Due to intense heat and to ensure the safety and overall health of student-athletes, Friday night’s football games for Will C. Wood High School and Vanden High School were postponed.

Will C. Wood’s varsity road game against River Valley High School is rescheduled for 9 a.m. today. Vanden’s home game versus Rodriguez High School is canceled. While the Vanden JV team was able to compete Thursday night, Wood’s JV and freshman football games were canceled all together, according to Wood Athletic Director Beth Kelly.

After a weeklong dialogue with River Valley and representatives of the Sac-Joaquin Section, Kelly received a final call Friday afternoon from River Valley Athletic Director Phil McCaulley. The Yuba City Unified School District had elected to reschedule the varsity game and cancel the freshman and JV games.

Source: Will C. Wood, Vanden football games postponed

Measure S director: Finishing touches being put on Benicia High stadium – Benicia Herald

By Nick Sestanovich

The renovation of Benicia High School’s George Drolette Stadium has just a little more work to be done before it can be opened for use, according to an update provided by Measure S Bond Director Roxanne Egan on the voter-approved initiative at Thursday’s school board meeting.In 2014, Benicia residents voted to approve a ballot initiative that would provide $49.6 million in bond funding for improvements at each of the Benicia Unified School District’s seven schools. One of the largest projects to be funded was a remodel of Benicia High’s football and soccer stadium and track & field, including such changes as a new 8-lane all-weather track, upgraded lighting and new bleachers.

The previous stadium had been demolished in July 2016, and a groundbreaking ceremony for the new facilities was held one month later. Construction was expected to be completed in the spring, but several delays in construction— including one of the wettest winter seasons in a long time— pushed its potential opening back to the fall. A grand opening ceremony was slated for August, but Egan said more work remains to be done.Further work includes completing painting on the team room buildings— including blue striping and yellow trim, painting a Benicia Panthers logo on the backside of the press box, custom painting the restroom building and applying stucco to the concession building.However, Egan noted that a lot of work has been done in the last couple of months, including applying stucco to the restroom building, adding color to the press box and adding lettering to the track. Egan said the last item was a good symbolic representation for the current stage of the project.

Source: Measure S director: Finishing touches being put on Benicia High stadium

Facebook chat to focus on concussions – Daily Republic

By Daily Republic Staff

High school sports are gearing up for the fall season, and with that comes the risk of concussions.

NorthBay Healthcare surgeon and Trauma medical director J. Peter Zopfi, D.O., will answer questions about concussion during the next #OurDocTalk chat at 3:30 p.m. Wednesday on the NorthBay Facebook page.

#OurDocTalk is a series of live Facebook chats designed to connect NorthBay doctors with the community to answer questions on a variety of health issues.

Source: Facebook chat to focus on concussions

Sports study: High school athletes not being fully protected – Daily Republic

By The Associated Press

A high school sports study conducted by the Korey Stringer Institute shows that many individual states are not fully implementing key safety guidelines to protect athletes from potentially life-threatening conditions, including heat stroke.

More than 7.8 million high school students participate in sanctioned sports annually. KSI announced the results Tuesday at a news conference at NFL headquarters. The league partially sponsors the institute.

The state-by-state survey of all sports played in high school showed North Carolina with the most comprehensive health and safety policies at 79 percent, followed by Kentucky at 71 percent. At the bottom were Colorado (23 percent) and California (26 percent). Those scores were based on a state meeting best practice guidelines addressing the four major causes of sudden death for that age group: cardiac arrest, traumatic head injuries, exertional heat stroke and exertional sickling occurring in athletes with sickle cell trait.

Source: Sports study: High school athletes not being fully protected

Youthful Meyers takes over as Rodriguez football coach – Daily Republic

By Paul Farmer

Being named head coach of a high school football team before his 28th birthday wasn’t on Stephen Meyers’ to-do list.

It just turned out that way.

Meyers, 27, was hired earlier this year by Rodriguez High to replace Greg Sutter, whose teams were 5-15 on the field during his two years as coach, though three victories in 2016 were forfeited because the Mustangs played an ineligible player.

“I can’t say I thought I’d be a head coach at 27,” said Meyers, who was an assistant coach under Berwyn Hutcherson in 2014. “The opportunity presented itself and I couldn’t pass it up.”

Source: Youthful Meyers takes over as Rodriguez football coach

Upbeat Gonzalez takes over as Armijo football coach – Daily Republic

By Paul Farmer

Anthony Gonzalez is in just his second year in the Armijo High football program and a few months into being the Indians head coach, replacing David Castillo.

Yet Gonzalez knows he’s taking over a team where history isn’t on its side.

For the record, the Indians haven’t made the postseason since 1937 or won a league championship since 1955. They’ve also had a school-record 10 straight losing seasons and their nine wins in the 2010s are the fewest in any decade since the 1920s when they went 12-10-4 after the school restarted playing football in 1926.

Source: Upbeat Gonzalez takes over as Armijo football coach

Comprehensive sports concussion team aims to advance care and education – Daily Republic

By Chyresse Hill

When an athlete suffers a concussion, a form of traumatic brain injury caused by a bump, a blow or jolt to the head, the brain experiences an energy crisis, a depletion of power similar to a cellphone on low battery.

“At the time of a concussion there is a sudden shift in energy use. Injured brain cells consume energy at a rapid pace and the brain can’t keep up,” said Crystal Hnatko, D.O., with the Sports Medicine department at Kaiser Permanente Vacaville.

This is why the seconds, minutes, hours and even a few days after a concussion are critical. It is important to decrease the fuel the brain requires, in hopes of minimizing cell injury, Dr. Hnatko said.

Source: Comprehensive sports concussion team aims to advance care and education

Bethel High earns SJS community service awards – Daily Republic

By Daily Republic Staff

For the past six years, the Sac-Joaquin Section has awarded three different schools with the Dick Nelson Community Service Award, which recognizes teams that have made an impact on their community.

The award is given to a certain team during the fall, winter and spring seasons.

The Vacaville Christian High boys basketball team was selected to receive the award for the winter season, while the Bethel High football team was given the award for the fall season. Those schools honored with the selection receive not only a banner from the section, but also $500.

Source: Vacaville Christian and Bethel High earn SJS community service awards

DHS Athletics updates athletic policy process – The Reporter

By Michael Morris

School may have wrapped up last week, but the Dixon High School Athletic Department is already preparing for the fall.

On June 1, Dixon High officially opened up its brand new registration procedure for prospective student-athletes, offering a method that is almost entirely online.

After facilitating a familiar process that typically included stacks of forms, multiple meetings, and unnecessary questions at times, DHS Athletic Director and teacher Angela West spearheaded the effort to offer a more user-friendly approach.

Dixon High will also be hosting it’s lone mandatory meeting for fall sports on Aug. 3 at 6 p.m.. But unlike past years, the mandatory meeting will be broken up into small groups that are led by the coaches of the respective fall sports (cross country, football, water polo, girls golf, girls volleyball, cheer). “It allows the parents to log on and take care of it from home,” said Dixon High Athletics secretary Norma Holtmeyer. “We have probably had a half dozen parents sign their kids up and they said how it was very user friendly. I think in our world, nowadays anyway, a lot of things are online and it’s almost expected.”

 

Source: DHS Athletics updates athletic policy process

Vanden celebrates 11 student-athletes signing letters of intent – Daily Republic

By Marcus Lomtong

There were 11 Vanden High student-athletes honored for signing a letter of intent inside the school’s small theater, Wednesday.

On the surface it was a normal signing ceremony with the athletes being honored for getting the opportunity to play at the next level, but this class wasn’t as normal as it may have seemed.

Being honored were Korie Corral, Aryel Moreland, Andrea Walker, Kaelee Campbell, Julie Blackshell-Fair, Clarissa Sanchez, Lauryn Zabat, Phoenix Shackelford, Hope Brandner, James Ballard Jr. and Kiera Connelly.

Source: Vanden celebrates 11 student-athletes signing letters of intent

Armijo’s Jordan Terrell signs letter of intent to George Fox – Daily Republic

By Marcus Lomtong

It’s not that often a student-athlete can play just three games of his senior season and still get the opportunity to play baseball at the next level.

That ‘s the case for Armijo High baseball player Jordan “JoJo” Terrell, who signed a national letter of intent, Friday, to play baseball at George Fox University in Newberg, Oregon.

Source: Armijo’s Jordan Terrell signs letter of intent to George Fox

Brendan Erwin to run for University of St. Mary after career at Armijo – Daily Republic

By Marcus Lomtong

Running long distances is Brendan Erwin’s specialty for the Armijo High cross country and track teams.

He won’t have to run a long distance to go to college, but he will have to travel a long distance, having signed a national letter of intent inside E. Gary Vaughn Gymnasium, Friday, to the University of St. Mary in Leavenworth, Kan., on a full-ride scholarship.

Erwin didn’t choose the Spires because the campus is more than 1,700 miles away, though. In fact, he chose them because life after athletics is just as important as being a student-athlete.

Source: Brendan Erwin to run for University of St. Mary after career at Armijo

Red-letter day at Wood High – The Reporter

By Richard Bammer

If it were a novel, a high school English teacher might say it symbolizes “a hero’s journey.”

But it was groundbreaking Thursday afternoon for the new Wildcat Stadium complex at Will C. Wood High, a festive event that capped a four-year journey — in ways deliberative, necessary, much-anticipated, and arguably signifying heroic efforts by many Vacaville residents, depending on your point of view — made possible, at long last, by Measure A funds.

After musical fanfare, customary speeches, a countdown, confetti, cheers, some dozen Wood students, in white hard hats and shovels in hand, turned over earth that symbolically kicked off construction of a $12.8 million project that will begin May 8 and end Feb. 1, easily in time for the school’s first senior class commencement at the Marshall Road campus, at the intersection of Peabody and Marshall roads. In the ensuing months, however, and as they have for many years, Wildcat football games will continue to be held in Zunino Stadium at Vacaville High on West Monte Vista Avenue.

Source: Red-letter day at Wood High

Will C. Wood breaking ground on stadium – Daily Republic

By Daily Republic Staff

A groundbreaking ceremony for the new Wildcat Stadium will be held at 3:30 p.m. on April 27 at Will C. Wood High School.

Work on the $13 million stadium is expected to be completed in December.

More than 15 students will participate in the shovel ceremony, along with local elected officials. More than 250 people are expected to attend.

Source: Will C. Wood breaking ground on stadium

Lady Vikes three-peat for Section title, defeat Sacramento 56-47 – The Reporter

By Michael Morris

They knew it would be a tall order.

But for the undefeated Lady Vikes, Friday night’s game reached newfound heights.

Without its Solano Athletic Conference MVP and undoubted team-leader, Julia Blackshell-Fair, Vanden (26-5) relied upon an unconventional cast of characters en route to back-to-back Sac-Joaquin Section Division II championships, defeating No. 3 Sacramento (22-9) 56-47 at the Alex G. Spanos Center in Stockton.

Vanden’s Blackshell-Fair, who played the entire semifinal against Elk Grove, was held to just 12 minutes Friday as she picked up three fouls in the first seven minutes of the opening quarter and then fouled out in the third after a charge that was followed up with a technical. However, the University of Houston commit was just happy that the team didn’t let her mistakes get in the way of the team’s objective.

Source: Lady Vikes three-peat for Section title, defeat Sacramento 56-47

Fairfield High Hall of Famer enjoys the retired life – Daily Republic

By Marcus Lomtong

For some, retirement is fantasized as relaxation with plenty of downtime.

For Mike Dailey, former Fairfield High School coach, athletic director and recent FHS Hall of Fame inductee, retirement is about relaxation but with plenty of activity.

Dailey, 67, began coaching Fairfield’s track team in 1989 and then took over the cross country reins in 1990. His coaching led to six Sac-Joaquin Section titles in track, with seven MEL crowns and two boys cross country league titles in 1992 and 1993. His dual meet record was 107-21.

Source: Fairfield High Hall of Famer enjoys the retired life

Armijo ready for State cross country championship – Daily Republic

By Marcus Lomtong

For the first time in it’s 125-year school history, Armijo High will be represented as a team at the California Interscholastic Federation cross country championships at Fresno, Saturday.

All because of a group of guys that work hard and gel together as a unit – on and off the course.

The Armijo boys cross country team will be heading to the CIF state championship on Saturday, led by Sac-Joaquin Section Division I individual winner, Luis Grijalva. The boys joining him are Brendan Erwin, Nixon McKenzie, Zakari Wahid, Michael Emerson, Ryan Dix and Nate Oriate.

Source: Armijo ready for State cross country championship

Armijo grad Steve DeVries to be inducted into Cal Hall of Fame – Daily Republic

By Paul Farmer

When Steve DeVries is referred to as a “hall of famer” it won’t just be for the Sac-Joaquin Section.

The former Armijo High boys tennis great is among eight former University of California greats set to inducted into the Cal Athletic Hall of Fame on Saturday.

DeVries, who played No. 1 singles all four years with the Bears, was named a singles All-American his final three seasons, adding doubles as a senior.

Source: Armijo grad Steve DeVries to be inducted into Cal Hall of Fame