Lacrosse program gets overhaul

BUCKHANNON – The Upshur County Board of Education passed a measure Tuesday that will bring schools’ club lacrosse teams under the scrutiny of the schools’ athletic director, treating the clubs like any other sport sponsored by the school system.

Superintendent Roy Wager explained lacrosse teams are considered clubs because the West Virginia Secondary Schools Athletic Commission does not sanction lacrosse as a sport. The school system pays for all athletic teams’ travel expenses and for officials at the games. Other expenses like uniforms and equipment come from each school’s athlete director.

“Transportation is our biggest expense,” Wager said. “My suggestion is we do the same for lacrosse that we do with other sports.”

Wager said each team makes requests for expenditures to the athletic director, who then disperses the funds as needed. Since lacrosse is a club sport the county school system does not currently have any control over the sport.

“If we are going to have this activity, we should bring it under our umbrella and have control over it,” Upshur County Schools Finance Manager George Carver said.

Carver said by treating the clubs the same as other sports, it gives the county the ability to monitor training and ensure the students have the proper equipment.

Wager made a recommendation to the board to have lacrosse be classified with other sports and to work with the schools’ athletic directors for any other expenses except transportation and payment of officials, which are paid for by the county.

BOE President Teresa Bellamy said the decision will allow the teams to be put into rotation for new uniforms and other items along with the other teams sanctioned by the county. BOE Vice President Tammy Samples said many of the athletes that participate in lacrosse currently purchase much of their own equipment.

Board member Greenbrier Almond made a motion to approve the recommendation, which was seconded by board member Alan Suder. The motion was passed unanimously by the board.

Wager said if the need arises for equipment that costs more than available in an athletic directors’ budget, the coaches can come and request additional funding from the board.

The next regularly scheduled Upshur County Board of Education meeting is set for 7 p.m. Aug. 2 at the board office.