ROCKINGHAM — Despite the daily threat of afternoon thunderstorms, the repaving of the tennis courts at Richmond Senior remains on schedule, while the track project hit a few snags along the way.
RSHS athletic director Kevin Mabe expects the tennis courts to be completed by the end of the month, while the track should be finished around Sept. 30.
The original plan was for both projects to wrap up before the start of the school’s fall sports season. However, as Hudson Paving began working on the track, it ran into a handful of unexpected problems.
“It was a little shorter than 400 meters,” said Terry Jordan, project manager with Hudson Paving.
Because the track needed to be slightly lengthen, workers were forced to move the inside lane towards the football field. This change forced another unforeseen difficulty, replacing several sprinkler heads around the field.
Jordan added his crew is having to remove and rebuild the concrete curbs surrounding the inside and outside lanes of the track. In addition, Jordan said the track will receive an additional cross slope from 1 percent to 1.25 percent to assist with channeling water towards the drainage system.
“We are committed to having the track done by the first varsity football home game on Aug. 31,” Jordan said. “After the asphalt is done, it will then get a rubber coating and that will probably come in September.”
Despite the difficulties and the slight delay, Mabe believes the finished product will be worth the wait. Mabe said the track will get seven treatments of the rubber coating and the final phase of the work should be completed before the beginning of Southeastern Conference football action with Hoke County on Sept. 27.
“We are going to have a world-class track and world-class tennis courts,” Mabe said. “When other teams like Pinecrest come here, they are going to be impressed.”
Mabe added with the setbacks, there could be some scheduling problems for the upcoming varsity and junior varsity football and soccer seasons. The JV football team is slated to open the year with two home games on Aug. 16 against Sun Valley and the following Thursday versus Lee County, while the soccer squad is set to play host to Southern Lee on Aug. 13. The varsity football team will play its first two contests of the year on the road before returning to Raider Stadium to face Anson County on Aug. 30.
One possible solution Mabe and RSHS administrators have discussed is moving the soccer and JV football contests to the school’s practice fields. Another possibility is to switch all of the school’s home games in both sports to road games until the track is completed. Although Mabe said that would be “worst, worst case scenario.”
— Sports editor Shawn Stinson can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 14, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org