Boys, girls doubleheaders may return for basketball

April 05, 1996|By Stan Rappaport | Stan Rappaport,SUN STAFF

For the last two seasons, county fans wanting to watch their home team in girls and boys varsity basketball had to make a choice. The girls played at one site, the boys at another and both at the same time.

That might change next season.

Don Disney, county coordinator of athletics, is considering going back to the system that was abandoned two years ago and having varsity girls and boys basketball doubleheaders.

"I hope it happens," said Centennial girls basketball coach Dave Greenberg. "I'm strongly in favor of going back to the old system. I thought it was a travesty that we left it."

Disney said security and sportsmanship problems at junior varsity games sparked the switch two years ago. He said "officiating problems" might force the change back.

With the addition of Long Reach and River Hill high schools next fall, the county will need 40 officials per night. To save money and to get better quality officials, Disney is considering having separate crews for the varsity games but using the same crew to officiate both junior varsity contests. That would reduce by 10 the number of officials needed.

"It comes down to the shortage of officials," Disney said. "We're working with the officials' organization and trying to iron out some problems. We're trying to get more officiating for less.

"Right now, we're collecting a lot of data. Nothing is etched in stone. We're trying to work on improving the officiating."

To help correct problems they had at junior varsity games years ago, Disney said a school administrator would be assigned to the games and that there would be an admission charge.

Disney said he will make a recommendation on the format in June to the county's Committee on Interscholastic Athletics, made up of high school principals, athletic directors and two coaches' representatives. Superintendent Michael Hickey would make the final decision in early July.

The majority of girl players and coaches like the old system because it meant larger crowds at their games. Many boys coaches enjoy the current system because it allows them to watch their junior varsity teams.

New alignment in 1997?

The 10 county high schools might be split into two divisions in DTC volleyball in 1997, according to Disney.

"What I'm trying to do is put more emphasis on the county championship rather than the state championship," said Disney, who is considering the idea.

Disney said the divisions would be as follows: West -- Atholton, River Hill, Glenelg, Wilde Lake and Centennial; East -- Mount Hebron, Howard, Long Reach, Oakland Mills and Hammond. Teams in the same division would play each other twice and play once against squads in the other division. The two division winners would play for the county title.

Disney said that if the new alignment goes into place and is successful, other sports would do the same thing.

Scorpions penalized

The Rules and Infractions Committee last week voted 2-1 that the Oakland Mills girls basketball team must forfeit its first game of the 1996-97 season because it conducted an out-of-season practice.

"There's no dispute," said Oakland Mills principal Marshall Peterson. "The rule, I think, is clear and has been clear."

Girls basketball coach Teresa Waters opened the Oakland Mills gym to alumni and current players on the evening of Monday, March 11, two days after the state championships.

"It wasn't a practice. It was some good, pick-up basketball," said Waters, who joined in on the action. "If I was at fault, I was at fault. It wasn't intentional. If I thought I was violating anything, I wouldn't have done it."

Waters planned to open the gym again on March 18, and gave Peterson and athletic director Ken Klock a copy of a basketball newsletter listing the event. It was then that Peterson called Disney to report the violation. Waters' presence in the gym created the violation.

The Rules and Infractions Committee, consisting of Wilde Lake principal Bonnie Daniel, Glenelg athletic director Mike Williams (subbing for Atholton AD Don Van Deusen) and Greenberg, made the ruling last Monday.

The Scorpions, who finished 6-18 overall and 1-13 in the league last season, are scheduled to play North Harford in their opener. The game still will be played.

Becker leaves basketball

Howard teacher Pat Becker, who coaches field hockey and lacrosse at Howard and basketball at Mount Hebron, will not coach basketball next season. The Vikings were 30-17 overall and 19-9 in the league the last two years, and reached the Class 2A state semifinals in Becker's first season.

"I enjoyed the kids, but I prefer to coach at my own school," said Becker, who will keep her field hockey and lacrosse duties at Howard.

Prangley in tournament

Atholton's No. 1 girls tennis player, sophomore Karen Prangley, leaves for Palm Springs, Calif., today with her mother, Joy, and aunt, Tricia, for the Easter Bowl National Tennis Championships.

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