School athletic directors assess facilities (GALLERY)

Published: Friday, April 26, 2013 at 04:01 PM.

Additionally, the school lacks a baseball field, but uses the community baseball and softball complex. "The baseball field down there is very nice," Brunson said. “The thing ... is, it's not on campus so our kids can't use it during the school day. And we don't have any dressing facilities down there.”

The school mostly needs dressing rooms for athletes and bathrooms for fans, he said. Additionally, space in the 1,400-square-foot field house and weight room is getting tight, he said. "We definitely need more square footage in our weight room.” Three-thousand square feet would be adequate.

Still, he said, "as far as the niceness of our facilities and the upkeep job our coaches do, I would grade them high: an A" he said. "But as far as the feasibility and the square footage of our weight room facility and the lack of gym space for our teams, I'd grade it very low, a D maybe.And as far as our baseball field being displaced down the road and our guys not being able to walk out back and having a practice facility and a dressing room facility, I'd grade that very low. But as far as us coaches making it work with what we've got and the upkeep of the facilities and it being what it is, I think it's fine. So overall it would be a C plus or B minus.”

Laurel Hill

LaurelHill School, Okaloosa County’s smallest public school with a high school athletic program, only fields teams in volleyball, boys and girls basketball, baseball and softball, but facility maintenance is still a concern.

The school takes pride in and frequently upgrades the facilities, Laurel Hill athletic director and head boys basketball coach Kent Zessin said. "Any time we are able to get funding for athletic facilities, it is greatly appreciated, and we try to stretch that money as far as we possibly can," he said. "We have done some ... renovation or remodeling to our three athletic facilities over the last 10 years, starting with the softball field, adding lights, and (as) recently as last year, adding two dugouts to that facility.

"As far as the baseball facility, it has been ... maybe eight years now that a new backstop was put in, a three-foot wall with the netting. Also, there was a renovation of the dugout, a new scoreboard, infield grass and irrigation system that brought that facility up to par with everyone in the county."



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