The N.C. Athletic Directors Association held its annual conference this week in Asheville. More than 200 high school athletics directors from across the state gathered to share common problems and discuss possible solutions.
“There was a lot of discussion about the impact the weather has had this spring, especially involving the basketball championships,” said Darren Coe, the Wake County Schools senior administrator for athletics. “We talked about if there is anything we can do on the county level to help in those situations.”
The basketball regionals were impacted this year. Games had to be postponed because of travel conditions.
“There are a lot of factors that go into whether our students can participate, but the No. 1 priority is always keeping the students safe,” Coe said.
Wake County is large and travel conditions in Wake Forest might be different from those in Fuquay-Varina and conditions at Green Hope can be different from those at East Wake.
Bobby Hill, the Durham Hillside athletics director, said one of the most beneficial aspects of the conference were meetings grouped by classification. The 4A ADs met together as did the 3A, 2A and 1A in separate meetings.
The groups discussed questions from the N.C. High School Athletic Association. Responses were recorded and will be provided to the NCHSAA staff.
“I think the association is going to get some great feedback,” Hill said. “We had time to really discuss ideas and it was a relaxed atmosphere. ”
One point of discussion was the exceptions the NCHSAA made to its weekly game limits this winter because of weather-related postponements.
“The NCHSAA showed great flexibility and moved quickly,” Hill said. “But now the question is, that having done it once, will it be done more often? Is holding competition on a Sunday really an option in the future? Would it be good to loosen the weekly limits or leave them like they are? Is the playoff structure now what we want? There are different opinions.”
Hill said it was important for the ADs to give feedback to the NCHSAA.
“We have a different perspective than coaches,” Hill said. “The coaches in this sport or that sport may want something, but we’re looking at the overall program.”
The AD conference also was geared toward education. Seven classes were offered that can lead toward certification as an athletic administrator. North Carolina is among the national leaders in coaching certification and athletics administration.
Panther Creek’s L.J. Hepp took a risk management course and said a presentation on social media was informative.
“We think of the negative aspects of social media, but we learned ways to use social media in a positive manner,” he said.
Reserve keeper: Holly Springs senior Bailey Ulm, the backup girls’ soccer keeper, played a key role in the Hawks’ 1-1 tie Wednesday night Panther Creek. Ulm had not played keeper since the fourth grade until this season.
She was pressed into a action when starter Nikkie DeBardelaben broke her fibula. The Catamounts’ only goal came off a Briana Velasquez penalty kick.
“That was incredible,” Holly Springs coach Brian Miller said of Ulm’s performance.
Panther Creek (8-0-1, 4-0-1) entered the Student Sports national rankings this week at No. 47 but had to rally against Holly Springs (6-0-2, 2-0-1).
Big leagues: Former West Carteret High baseball standout Lonnie Chisenhall has earned a spot on the Cleveland Indians’ opening-day roster. He was the Indian's first-round pick in 2008.
J. Mike Blake contributed to this story.