|Messenger photos by Dedra Cordle|
|Travone Youngblood, 15, works on speed drills in the end zone of the new athletic field at Grove City Christian High School. Youngblood (above), a student at Eastmoor Academy was participating in the High Intensity Training (HIT) Camp on July 21. This is the first time anyone has used the new football field at GCCS since it was finished on July 19.|
|Nine year old Ethan Cormany masters the mini-hurdles at the HIT Camp at Grove City Christian School.|
When the Eagles fly onto the field for the 2007-2008 football season, it won’t be where the Golden Falcons play this time.
During Grove City Christian High School’s inaugural season, the football team played their home games at Franklin Heights High School. However, after raising more than $1.3 million for the Huffaker Sports Complex, they finally have a place to call their own.
On July 19, the athletic field was officially unveiled much to the delight of first year Head Coach Clyde Lucas.
"It’s beautiful," he said. "This field is far superior to any other high school out there. I hope it gets recognition from the Ohio High School Athletic Association so maybe down the road we can hold championship games in football and soccer here. This field will be great for harsher weather conditions come late in the season."
You see, instead of using natural grass (which is becoming increasing rare in football stadiums) the Huffaker Sports Complex has synthetic turf in its place. The artificial turf will survive the wear and tear longer and makes it useful for other events, such as outdoor concerts, revivals, and community activities to name a few.
"I know in October there is going to be a marching band competition here, and during Labor Day Weekend, they’ll be holding a community church concert," said Lucas. "This isn’t just a field for athletic use; it’s open to the community also."
The first showing of the community outreach Lucas mentioned was the speed camp that took place on July 21. The camp was designed to teach youngsters develop proper running mechanics, flexibility, fine motor skills and overall physical fitness. They brought in experts of speed and training coaches from the Worthington based High Intensity Training (HIT) Center.
"Over 60 children came today from all over Central Ohio," said Jeanette Elwell-Cossin, a member of the Grove City Church of the Nazarene and volunteer at athletic events. "The older football players here are teaching lessons and sharing tips with the younger kids and it’s just great to see them giving them someone to look up to."
She added, "Last year, they were taught to weather the losses and defeats and learn from them because they are going to happen, so it’s great they are in a position to pass along that lesson."