OG Baseball Field getting renovations

By BETH BUNCH,

The Oak Grove High School baseball field, which is undergoing a renovation, got a boost Monday night when Lamar County School District board members voted 3-2 to approve installation of sod at the field at a cost of $37,654.50 from Cagle Sod Farm.

The sod will be paid from district funds. The alternate quote from Sport Contractors LLC was for $44,517.60. Board President Buddy Morris (District E) and District C Jeremy Chance cast the dissenting votes.

Chance asked about the project, questioning if this was sod for the infield and outfield and were they (members of the Warrior Club) talking about placing turf on the infield any time soon.

Placing sod on the baseball infield is Phase 2 of a multiphase Warrior Club Oak Grove Capital Improvement campaign that began in March. The Warrior Club, an all-volunteer organization, serves as boosters for all Oak Grove athletics

“What are the plans?” Chance asked Sean Little, coordinator of the campaign’s turf committee.

“That (turf in the infield) would be projected into the future plans,” said Little. “Overall that project came in more than $450,000, including the turf.”

In Phase 1 the club’s first concern was replacing the 13-year-old turf on the football field. The existing turf had been put down 13 years ago and had a 10-year lifespan. For safety reasons, the Warrior Club felt replacing the turf at the stadium prior to the start of the 2019 season was their first priority.

Morris questioned why the baseball field sod needed to be replaced.

Little explained that the field is being renovated.

“The infield is being raised 16 inches,” he said. “Currently there is a grade of about six inches from the infield to the outfield. It should be 16 to 20 inches to drain properly. So, that’s the reason. Everything is coming in new.”

The fundraising isn’t over.

A social media fundraising campaign kicked off during the Warriors’ first game of the season and will continue through Homecoming.

Little said there would also be other fundraisers, brick sales and the like, in order to raise the necessary funds for the various projects.

In other action regarding sports, the board:

n Purchased 60 footballs for Oak Grove High School at a cost of $5,847 from Rex Team Sports, to be paid from school activity funds; alternate quote from Boudreaux Athletics, $6,500;

n Accepted cash donation to OGHS of $5,847 from OGHS Athletic Boosters, to be used for purchase of football helmets.

n Approved the resignation of Kerri Lofton as archery coach at Sumrall Middle School effective Aug. 29, 2019;

n Approved the resignation of Alisha DeFatta as tennis coach at Lumberton High School effective Aug. 30, 2019;

n Transferred Stevenson Gandy as paid paraprofessional assistant football coach at OGHS to volunteer paraprofessional assistant football coach, retroactive to Aug. 16, 2019;

The non-certified recommendations included:

n Orie Hudson as paid paraprofessional assistant football coach at OGHS replacing Stevenson Gandy, retroactive to Aug. 16, 2019;

n Tiffany Anderson as part-time paraprofessional assistant volleyball coach at Purvis High School (new position), retroactive to July 1, 2019; also as part-time paraprofessional archery coach at Purvis Middle School, retroactive to July 1, 2019;

n Leslie Smith as part-time paraprofessional cheer coach at PMS replacing Brooke Williams/Briana Baker, retroactive to July 2, 2019;

n Gregory Faler as archery coach at Sumrall Middle School replacing Kerri Lofton, retroactive to Aug. 30, 2019;

n Walter Harry as paraprofessional girls tennis coach at Lumberton High School replacing Alisha DeFatta, retroactive to July 25.

Certified recommendations included:

n Charles Brown as junior high assistant football coach at Lumberton Middle School (new position), retroactive to Aug. 1