By Matt O’Donnell
An accomplished former professional and college basketball player, no one bullies Eric Crookshank these days.
But it wasn’t that long ago when Crookshank was just a young kid growing up, trying to find his way on Marin Street in West Vallejo.
Crookshank, 39, has been trying to spread awareness about childhood bullying through his organization — Bench Bullying. He held alumni games and a 3-point shooting contest at Jesse Bethel High School on Saturday.
“Growing up without a lot of financial help, I was bullied a lot,” Crookshank said. “When I played basketball, I was bullied as well. I decided to take the celebrity I have now and convert that into a positive.”
Source: Hogan High grad Crookshank tackles bullying during event at Jesse Bethel
By Michael Morris
Spirited students and faithful fans simultaneously turned a page in the school’s history as Will C. Wood held its long-awaited grand opening of Wildcat Stadium.
Students, school faculty and generations of Wood grads flocked to the stands and around the 50-yard line of the newly christened stadium to celebrate the completion of the highly anticipated venture. As the sea of supporters assembled in the stands and on the field, while soaking in the pristine scene shortly after 3:30 p.m., Wood Associated Student Body President Austin McLellan and 2017 WCW graduate Issac Stevens welcomed those in attendance and voiced their unrivaled elation for the special occasion.
Source: Will C. Wood hosts grand opening for Wildcat Stadium
By Bill Hicks
At the end of the school day Thursday, students at Will C. Wood were welcomed home – but not in the way they are on every other day.
Rather than spill out through the streets of Vacaville en route to their residences, the students piled into the school’s newly constructed athletics stadium, a feature that has been missing since it became a high school in 1989.
Thanks to funding made possible by the voter-passed Measure A, Will C. Wood students, for the first time, walked into a stadium built for their teams, decked out in their colors and sporting their school name and logo.“Look at this. It’s just awesome,” said Wood graduate Issac Stevens.
Source: Will C. Wood students celebrate new stadium
By Richard Bammer
It’s Day 2 and counting.
In a little more than 48 hours, students, faculty, Vacaville Unified leaders, and the Vacaville community will mark a milestone day in the history of Will C. Wood High.
More than 12 months since groundbreaking — and nearly four years since the passage of Measure A — work on the new $16 million Wildcat Stadium will come down Thursday to some likely ongoing final details and a celebratory grand opening.
Source: Red-letter day on the way for Will C. Wood stadium
By Paul Farmer
In the span of five days Will C. Wood High will celebrate its past and take a giant step into the future.
The school will induct the class of 2018 into the Will C. Wood Hall of Fame on Saturday at the Ulatis Community Center and hold a grand opening celebration for its new Wildcat Stadium at the corner of Marshall and Peabody roads on Thursday at 3:30 p.m.
Being inducted into the Thor Jensen, the only wrestling coach the school has had; Rochelle Jagdeo, M.D. (soccer, volleyball, track and field); Dathan Miller (wrestling, football); Darian Morton (football, track and field); Bob and Geri Zagata (athletic program contributors); and Marvin Brown (track, football, basketball).
Source: Will C. Wood to induct HOF class, hold stadium grand opening
By Rachel Raskin-Zrihen
A group of local athletes was “officially” deputized as International Youth Sports Ambassadors Monday for the City of Vallejo, at a news conference at the Vallejo Sister City Association headquarters.
In a Vallejo first, a team of basketball players from several local high schools and a Vallejo Taekwondo team, along with several coaches, parents, City Council members and other Sister City representatives, will be heading to Asia in July for goodwill and competitive sports matches. All they need now, is the money, spokeswoman Yolanda Kim said.
Source: Local youth athletes to be Vallejo’s cultural ambassadors
By Mack Drake
Calling all golfers.
The Will C. Wood High school golf program will be hosting its 5th Annual Wildcat Classic in May in an effort to raise money for uniforms, equipment, training aids and lesson opportunities for the school’s boys and girls golf teams.
The tournament features a four-person scramble format, and will be held at Cypress Lakes Golf Course on Saturday, May 12. The tournament begins with an 8:30 a.m. shotgun start.
The cost per golfer is set at $90 and includes passage into the post-tournament banquet. Vacaville Unified School District students can enter the tournament for $70, but that does not include entry into the banquet as there will be access to alcohol. For $20, individuals can forgo the golf and exclusively enter the banquet.
Source: Golf: Will C. Wood golf, Travis Air Force Base to host upcoming golf tournaments
By Richard Bammer
The end’s in sight.
The dream of a new athletics complex and stadium at Will C. Wood High is becoming reality, one day at a time since the spring 2017 groundbreaking at the Marshall Road campus in Vacaville, with hopes, Vacaville Unified officials say, for a grand opening in mid-April.
Dozens of construction workers Wednesday morning combed the site, grinding down concrete bleachers, operating loaders, driving mammoth trucks, adjusting the lighting, putting some finishing touches on the concessions and team rooms building, adding strips of synthetic turf here and there, as Jennifer Leonard, the district public information officer, led several hard-hat tours for district staff, city leaders, the media, and others.
Source: Construction of new $16M Wildcat Stadium nears completion
By Nick Sestanovich
For the past few weeks, Benicia High School has been raising money fora severely injured wrestler from Pleasant Hill.
On Jan. 10, College Park High School sophomore Ryan Joseph sufferedan injury to his spinal cord, leaving him paralyzed from the neck downand affecting his ability to breathe and speak on his own. He wastransferred to John Muir Medical Center’s trauma department andrecently moved over to Craig Hospital in Colorado, where he isreceiving specialized treatment. As of his most recent prognosis, hehas regained the ability to speak and has practiced breathing withouta ventilator.
Friends of Joseph established a GoFundMe page to help his family payfor medical expenses, rehabilitation and accessibility. The campaignhas raised more than $183,000, and nearby high schools, includingBenicia High, have found ways to support Joseph and his family.Craig Holden, Benicia High’s athletic director, said he had becomeaware of Joseph’s story through word of mouth, namely Facebook postsand at a meeting for athletic directors in the North Coast Section,the league which College Park High competes in and which Benicia Highis moving to next year. The next day, on Jan. 18, Benicia High wasgoing to have a dual wrestling match against Fairfield High School,and the athletics department decided it would be a good opportunity tosupport Joseph.
Source: BHS holds fundraiser for paralyzed wrestler
By Paul Farmer
Sometime this summer Monmouth, Oregon, will be invaded by Vikings.
Three, in fact.
In a backyard National Letter of Intent signing ceremony Wednesday, Vanden High football players Matt Casner, Luis Vicino and Israel White signed to play for the Western Oregon Wolves, while teammate Armon Bailey committed to play for the Hornets of Sacramento State.
“It’s amazing to see four move on to the next level,” Vikings football coach Sean Murphy said. “They’re all great young men. To watch them grow into the men they’ve become is amazing. It’s just exciting to see what they’ll do in their journey. I’m excited for their future.”
So are the four.
Bailey, the 2017 Solano County Athletic Conference Defensive Player of the Year, said he chose Sacramento State because “I’m more comfortable there. I have a lot of connections, that it’s close to home and I get to play football”
Source: Four Vikings sign to play football in college
By Paul Farmer
Nadiah Martinez of the Armijo HIgh girls soccer team battled older sister Jazmine Carranza, who played for Rodriguez, for two years, but starting next fall they’ll be college teammates.
In a lunchtime National Letter of Intent signing ceremony at Armijo’s E. Gary Vaughn Gymnasium, Martinez and teammates Mikeila Martinez and Abby Wolf, along with Jesse Mercado of the Indians football team, in committing to whom they’ll play for in college.
Nadiah Martinez, no relation to Mikeila, signed to play for Chico State, for whom Carranza started at defender as a freshman for the Wildcats last fall.
Martinez said she chose Chico State because “I went to a few camps there and I fell in love with the campus. It’s a very green campus. That’s what I love.”
Source: 4 Armijo athletes ink college letters of intent
By Michael Morris
Will C. Wood High School’s new stadium is running behind schedule, however, district officials are still optimistic the project will be completed between late March and early April.
With the original completion date of Feb. 1 steadily approaching for the $16 million project funded by Measure A, a meeting was held Friday morning at the Educational Services Center in Vacaville to decide the best possible course of action for Wildcat Stadium.
“We came to the conclusion the project will be completed at the end of March/early April,” wrote Dan Banowetz, director of facilities for the Vacaville Unified School District, in an email to The Reporter. “This is weather depending of course.”
Along with the consistent rainfall to start the year, Banowetz explained how attaining the concrete masonry unit was one of a few items that slowed down the project the last few months.
Source: Wildcat Stadium expected to be complete in late-March, early-April
By Michael Morris
The long-awaited construction of Will C. Wood High School’s new synthetic field and track won’t be finished by the anticipated Feb. 1 completion date.
Wednesday, Vacaville Unified School District Director of Facilities Dan Banowetz and Will C. Wood High School boys soccer coach Jorge Ruiz-Chavez confirmed that the $16 million project is behind schedule.
Although Banowetz was unable to provide a specific date regarding the completion of the field and the palatial stadium, he expects to have additional information once he sits down with Alten Construction President Bob Alten early next week.
Source: Will C. Wood High School’s new field, track is behind schedule
By Jessica Rogness
“Let me win. But if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.”
The Special Olympics oath once again rang true Friday throughout Schaefer Stadium at Fairfield High School as elementary school students of all abilities met up for their annual soccer match.
Some 360 students from Fairfield-Suisun Unified School District elementary schools — Anna Kyle, Center, Crescent, Dan O. Root, K.I. Jones, Laurel Creek, Nelda Mundy and David Weir — paraded around the track, receiving applause from Fairfield High School students, officers from the Fairfield Police Department, California State Prison, Solano and the California Highway Patrol, as well as Fairfield firefighters.
Source: Students play hard at Special Olympics soccer event
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
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
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
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
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
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