Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Heinz-sight: Switcheroo

From page A8 | August 28, 2013 | Leave Comment

Jerry Heinzer

The 2013 fall Oak Ridge girls volleyball team will be the second team in the last four years to play its home games away.

The undertaking from Measure Q to expand the Trojans’ gym 3,700 square feet forces the Oak Ridge girls out and up Highway 50 to Ponderosa High for it home season.

Sound familiar?

Back in 2010 this arrangement played out in reverse. The gym renovation in Shingle Springs moved the Lady Bruins and Samantha Rains (featured at right) down the hill to Harvard Way for Delta River League action. In Rains’ case, her senior home season.

On surface, it didn’t sound good then. Playing on the Oak Ridge floor was tough enough for Ponderosa let alone adding four additional matches to the equation.

But credit Rains and Ponderosa for making the best of the situation. The girls were a solid 7-3 in league to tie Oak Ridge for second place and won both of their ‘home’ playoff matches.

In intra-county face-offs, the Bruins and Trojans split. Ironically, Ponderosa won as the ‘visitors’ while Oak Ridge dropped the match the Bruins ‘hosted.’

St. Francis cleaned up that year with an undefeated league record. The Troubadours dropped just four sets in 10 conference matches — three to Ponderosa.

Though history tells us all isn’t lost when gym reconstruction wipes away the home schedule, Senior Night could feel awkward when its held in a rival’s gym.

Double-awkward for Breanne Horton. As the Trojans new varsity co-coach with Christy Bergin, Horton’s first season at the helm will play out where she prepped — Shingle Springs — before the ex-Bruin went on to play for Hope International University.

“Christy and I aren’t worried about them (Trojans) adapting to the Ponderosa gym … our girls have adapted very well to the craziness of the gym situation (here) and I assume playing there will be a lot like when they had to play here,” said Horton, a teacher at Oak Ridge.

Hopefully, somewhere within all that “craziness” in the expansion is a plumb spot for the Mountain Democrat to set up shop … kind of a reward for all the years of dedicated coverage?

If not, at lease one of those fist-bumps Principle Paul Burke doled out to open the school year?





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