The new track, which was named Ohio Valley Bank Track last fall, is part of the school’s brand new athletic complex. This track season, PPJSHS will host 10 home meets.
According to Chip Wood, head girls track coach, more than 130 meet invitations have been sent to high schools and middle schools across the state as well as Virginia, Ohio and Kentucky. He described the track team’s goal as to attract as many teams to the meets as possible as well as provide a fan friendly environment.
“We’re really excited to put on meets, and we are going to try to keep the meets athlete and spectator friendly,” Wood said.
Currently, the track team is looking for local businesses to sponsor meets. According to Wood, the sponsors help to pay for awards. This year, Wood said that more than just traditional awards will be given out at meets.
“We are going to give out awards for most outstanding performer in field, most outstanding performer in track and a combined events trophy for the school that has the highest boys and girls scores combined,” he added.
In addition, Wood said that the team appreciates sponsors because they want the community to be involved in the meets.
“We wanted to reach out to the community and we want them to participate in our track meets. The community was so instrumental in getting the athletic complex started, so we wanted to involve them,” he said.
Also new this year is the formation of a track boosters group. According to Wood, the boosters’ major goal is to raise funds for an automatic timing system. Currently, the track program does have the Hy-tek Meet Manager system. In addition, there are 12 registered officials in the area to help run the meets. However, Wood said that volunteers are always needed and appreciated.
The first home meet will be the Holzer Clinic Sports Medicine First Call Invitational, slated for March 20. Other home meets include, a tri-meet on March 23; the Holzer Clinic Sports Medicine Tuesday Night Meet, April 13; a quad on April 20; Donna Hussell Memorial Invitational, April 23; Paul Wood Memorial Invitational, April 24; Farmers Bank Gallia Academy Dual, April 27; and Black Knight Relays, May 4. In addition, there will be a meet on March 30 that has not yet been named. The cost for businesses to name a meet is $250.
PPJSHS also will host the Cardinal Conference Championship, which is set for May 6.