Classroom numbers game pushes South Carroll's Foltz off the field

CARROLL SPORTS

May 11, 1994|By BILL FREE

No one had to twist Joe Foltz's arm to coach the South Carroll baseball team, manicure the field daily, build a fence around the outfield and provide in-depth statistics at the end of each season.

On most Sunday mornings during the seven seasons he has directed the Cavaliers' fortunes, Foltz would get up at 8 in the morning and work on the diamond until early in the afternoon.

The man simply loved to coach high school baseball and he still does.

But barring a miracle, Foltz coached his last home game for the Cavaliers yesterday. He will not be wearing the black and gold South Carroll uniform next season or teaching electronics at the school.

The reason is kind of simple but still painful for Foltz.

The school doesn't need Foltz as a teacher anymore since not enough youngsters signed up for electronics. If he wants to continue teaching electronics, there are openings at Harford Vo-Tech in Harford County and in Quincy, Ill.

The coach said his wife doesn't want to move to Quincy, and prefers to stay in Carroll County.

Of course, Foltz could get a job outside of teaching and still coach the South Carroll baseball team as a part-time job if he could fit it in with his full-time work.

However, he said he believes a high school coach should be teaching at the school he coaches, and he refuses to compromise those principles.

Foltz said he is qualified to teach some other subjects in addition to electronics but intimated there were no positions open in those fields at South Carroll.

So, the mostly quiet and successful Foltz era is all but over.

All that is left is the team's bid for a 3A West Regional playoff berth this season. The Cavaliers are fighting Seneca Valley for the fourth and final berth in the tough regional.

Naturally, it would be nice for South Carroll to send Foltz out in grand style with at least a regional playoff appearance and possibly a trip to the state tournament.

However, Seneca Valley had to lose two of its final three games for the Cavaliers to make the regionals, even though South Carroll has a 14-6 record after its 13-1 victory yesterday over Liberty.

Foltz's team played a tough schedule this season and defeated two metro Top 20 teams in Centennial and Atholton. South Carroll beat Centennial to win the prestigious Gibbons tournament.

However, that win over Centennial didn't count toward the regional rankings since it came in a tournament and not in one of the team's regularly scheduled 18 games.

In all, it hasn't been the luckiest of years for Foltz, who is also an assistant football coach at South Carroll.

The strain of losing his teaching and coaching positions began to show on him during a game at Westminster three weeks ago when he got thrown out for arguing balls and strikes too long and too loud.

Anybody who has known Joe Foltz for a long time knows that was not the kind and warm gentleman they have grown to admire.

As Foltz left the field after being tossed out, he hesitated momentarily and said to his pitcher, Kile Maxcy, who was also ejected, "That is the maddest I've ever been in my life and the first time I've been kicked out in seven years."

It was obvious that the coach was a little embarrassed by his actions.

It would be good for the county if Foltz resurfaces next school year somewhere in the county as a teacher and a coach.

Carroll county needs more Joe Foltzes.

Class move at Westminster

Give Westminster principal Sherri-Le Bream and athletic director Steve Thomson credit for giving the new football coach at the school the attention he deserves tomorrow.

Thomson informed the media yesterday that a news conference would be held tomorrow at 1:15 at the school to announce who would replace Jeff Oeming.

That is the kind of style and class the school needs to put the

Owls back on the map in state high school football circles.

Henard honored

Former Liberty athletic director Bob Henard, who is retiring on medical disability, was given an appreciation dinner by the Liberty High School Lionbackers last Saturday at the Freedom District Fire Hall.

It was a fitting gesture for Henard, who was truly one of the good guys in Carroll County high school sports.

Give Chris Centofanti and the Lionbackers credit for putting together the night for Henard, who has never sought publicity or recognition.

Centofanti, whose daughter Krista was an All-Carroll County lacrosse selection in 1993, has been tireless in her efforts to promote all the right things about sports at Liberty High.

Chris Centofanti was saddened earlier this school year when two unfortunate incidents involving Liberty parents at games became public.

She pointed out: "Those situations involving those parents involved just a small minority of the parents at our school. We try to stop parents from doing those kind of things. Most of our parents work hard all school year to raise money for athletics and do anything else we can to make sports fun at the school."

She is right.

There is only a small minority of parents whose actions embarrass the school and its athletes.

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