Warren’s field renovations halted

A steady downpour of rain over the past week has made for a hectic early spring schedule for area baseball, softball, track, crew and tennis teams.

Perhaps most affected by the inclement weather is the Warren High baseball team. Although the Warriors managed to play their first three scheduled games of the season, the next month of the schedule will feature several changes.

Due to renovations that Warren’s home field is currently undergoing, the Warriors will be mixing and matching as far as where their home games will be played.

“We’re just really thankful that Belpre, Federal Hocking and Waterford have stepped up,” said Warren head baseball coach Kevin Welsh. Those are potential destinations where Warren will play its home games for the time being.

The Warriors have teamed up with Hickory Valley Sod to replace the field’s dirt and sod and were also looking at possibly installing barrier fences in front of the dugouts. Hickory Valley Sod has worked with other teams including Gallia Academy, where Warren played last Wednesday, and comes highly recommended.

“I think it’s going to be a very nice facility,” Welsh said.

The problem is that this work cannot be done on a wet field.

“Weather is obviously our biggest obstacle,” Welsh explained. “Every time it rains, we have to wait for it to dry.”

Right now, it is a waiting game for the Warriors. Welsh said he was unsure of a timetable as to when renovations might be completed. Until they are, Warren will not play on its home field.

Saturday’s scheduled doubleheader against Parkersburg was played at the Big Reds’ home field. It was originally supposed to be a home game for Warren.

Then after going on the road to Trimble and Logan on Tuesday and Wednesday this week, Warren will host Jackson on Friday at Federal Hocking. And because last Wednesday’s game was moved to Gallipolis, Warren’s April 16 game against Gallia will now be a home game at Waterford.

While these changes can be inconvenient for players and fans, it is something Warren needed to have done.

“We realize there are some additional inconveniences this season due to the renovation of our home field,” said Warren athletic director Debra Proctor in an e-mail to parents of Warren baseball players. “We want as much as you do to have baseball played at home. But we also wanted and will get a much-needed renovated baseball field.”

As for the players, life is good as long they get to play.

“They just want to play,” Welsh said. “Obviously, the seniors would love to get to play at home, and they understand that eventually they will.”