It’s time to renovate the OA fields

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With Orcutt Academy being a small school, there are limited sports facilities. We don’t have a gym, football field, or theater, and many of these are unlikely in the coming few years. We do, however, have the capability to provide soccer fields. Here at OA, the soccer teams have nowhere to practice due to the fields being in horrible condition, so it is time for the school district to take action.

Orcutt Academy is surrounded by grass fields but as of now they are in poor condition. There are gopher holes everywhere which makes it dangerous for sports teams like soccer to practice on. There have been incidences in which athletes, students, and a teacher have injured themselves from simply running on these fields.

For sports like girls soccer, they have to rent other fields to practice on like Hagerman Sports Complex which charges $50 for a 2 hour practice according to the girls varsity soccer coach Brian Speer. When they practice at least 2 days a week all that can add up quickly to $100 per week.

After speaking with Brian Speer he believes “to fix the fields correctly it would be costly.” A majority of the cost comes from labor to do it. They would first use large equipment to come in and put down gopher wire to prevent gophers from creating holes again in the future. Then it would cost around $400,000 after prepping the area. This is the best solution and fundable. An alternative fix for the fields could be filling in the gopher holes; however, this is a temporary fix because eventually the gophers will just create more holes, so the district should do the better, yet more costly solution.

To get another point of view, junior goalkeeper on the girls varsity soccer team Abigail Valencia explains how sports should be a high priority and we should at least be, “going over and fixing the holes if not like re-patching all the grass…”

With such an expensive fix, the school may be hesitant to do so because they may claim to not have the money. However, it can result in not having to spend money to practice and play on other fields when we have a home field in great condition.

The soccer teams at Orcutt Academy would surely support in a barbecue fundraiser like they have in the past. The school could also look into having a sponsor from a local business.

 At Orcutt Academy, the sports are getting better, but they can’t be expected to continue to make progress if they don’t have the proper facilities. If our teams can’t practice on a safe field, how can we expect them to play well? This issue can be resolved, however it comes at a tremendous cost. If we look at the overall benefit, it could be a great investment in the long run.