Athletic projects around the area remain on schedule as the summer moves toward the start of fall sports practices.
And you can add one more project to the list. Borgia Wednesday approved a plan by the Borgia Athletic Association to place turf onto the school’s baseball and softball infield. The outfield will remain grass.
Borgia President George Wingbermuehle stressed that the funds for the project are coming completely from the Borgia Athletic Association.
“We are thankful that the athletic association is donating this turf baseball field to us,” Wingbermuehle said. “It is a donation from the athletic association to the high school. There isn’t any money from the high school going toward this. This was something the athletic association thought was a need. There was an opportunity to get a very good price on it and they put together a package to work it all out. To me, this is a phenomenal show of support by the athletic association.”
Borgia Athletic Director Brad Bruns lauded the Borgia Athletic Association.
“From my standpoint, it’s amazing that the athletic association would do such a thing for the high school,” Bruns said. “It’s wonderful for our baseball and softball athletes. The softball team will be able to play their games on campus now.”
Jay Schroeder of the Borgia Athletic Association said this is part of the annual projects the association has undertaken for the school.
“From an athletic association standpoint, we try to take a bigger project every 7-10 years,” Schroeder said.
Those projects have included a concession stand and storage buildings at the top, the soccer field, reworked the baseball field, the practice fields and the backstop for the baseball field. The track and field and press box projects were done in conjunction with the school.”
It is hoped the field upgrades, which also include the installation of a scoreboard (First Community Bank donated it), will be ready in time for the district softball tournament.
Bruns indicated the scoreboard was donated last year, but due to the wet weather this spring, it could not be installed until this summer.
Borgia will host the event in October.
“Our goal is to have this project done by the district tournament,” Bruns said. “That could change with weather and other situations.”
For softball, the baseball mound will be moved (it’s portable with the new field) and temporary fencing will be brought in to shorten the dimensions.
The school credited Don Bollinger of ATG and Pasta House for helping to make the baseball field project happen.
Lights for the baseball field are a future project for the baseball and softball complex.
“This will be the only field within about a 60-mile radius which will have a turf infield,” Schroeder said.
Borgia’s track will be closed next week as it receives a respray to address warranty issues.
“We’re closing the track next week,” Bruns said. “When ATG was here for the baseball field, they noticed there was some premature wearing on the track. They took pictures and sent them to the manufacturer of the spray coating and they’re going to come back and respray and restripe the entire track to make sure it’s done up to standards. After that, we’ll have another seven-year warranty on the track.”
Wingbermuehle stressed that the athletic association is taking care of everything.
“This is not reflected at all in tuition or any of the fund-raising we do here at Borgia,” Wingbermuehle said. “This is a gift from the athletic association.”
Schroeder added, “There is no school money going to this enhancement.”
Turf is going down at the Scanlan Stadium/Rauch Field project. So far, the project has been running pretty much on schedule. Articles on the Washington High School project have appeared in the news section of The Missourian throughout the summer.
Union Athletic Director Chris Arand reports the Union High School turf project is on track.
“It’s going good,” Arand stated. “They should be laying turf probably early next week.”
The turf upgrade is part of a project to improve Stierberger Stadium. Union has played its football games there since the fall of 1990 and also plans to move soccer games to the new surface.
Union is scheduled to host Poplar Bluff in its varsity football season opener Friday, Aug. 30.
Gasconade County Republican Sports Editor Will Johnson had two updates on the athletic situation at Owensville High School.
First, the Owensville turf and track project is on schedule. The Dutchmen are scheduled to open the season at home Friday, Aug. 30, against Borgia.
Second, Steve Tappmeyer will serve as the interim athletic director for Owensville this school year. Josh Hoener took a job as principal at New Haven High School and is leaving Owensville.
Hoener is an Owensville graduate. His wife, Jaime, is a New Haven graduate and is in her second stint as the school’s volleyball head coach.
By the end of the 2013-14 school year, all but one area school (Pacific) is slated to have a turf football/soccer field in place. St. James will retain its grass field for the fall season, but as soon as the last game is played, the school will start its conversion project. That’s expected to be completed in the spring.