Have You Ever Heard Of Pine High School?

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I received a phone call Tuesday evening from high school sports guru and Arizona Interscholastic Association Sports Information Director Barry Sollenberger, who told me something I didn’t know.

Sollenberger, author of several prep sports record books and a highly popular Arizona football magazine, says he has uncovered evidence that a Pine High School once existed.

Seems one of Sollenberger’s journalistic endeavors, which has been ongoing for about the past 15 years, is to write a book about little-known Arizona high schools.

The author is convinced that in the 1930s and early 40s, Pine High existed and played a sports schedule against Winslow, Holbrook and other schools.

Sollenberger believes that anyone who attended the school must now be in the late 70s or 80s. He’s enlisted my help in trying to uncover more evidence that Pine High once existed.

I was born in Prescott, raised in Ash Fork and Winslow, and lived in Phoenix, Tempe, Show Low, Payson and Pine, but I’ve never heard of Pine High School.

Is there anyone who can help? If so, give me a call at 474-5251.

What’s with this?

The Arizona Interscholastic Association proposal to limit off-season coaching in high school sports in causing quite a stir at Payson High and other schools around the state. If the proposal becomes an AIA rule, it would put the clamps on how much time a coach can spend with his players during the off-season.

One of the most affected coaches at PHS would be Dave LaMotte. His program thrives on the experience athletes acquire during the spring in USA Wrestling and AAU tournaments. Under the proposal, the coach would be restricted from coaching his wrestlers once the season ended in February.

LaMotte says he is frustrated by the proposal and can only hope that AIA officials soon recognize the unreasonable limitations it would put on prep programs.

Girls basketball coach Krystal Garvin also has her concerns. She wants to know if she’d be violating the proposal if she conducts an open gym evening during the off-season.

The AIA proposal says that open facilities are legal but “that no coaching is taking place.”

So, Garvin asks, if I show a player proper free throw technique, did I break the rule?

Like LaMotte and Garvin, most every PHS coach is questioning the AIA proposal.

In putting together the “Out of Season Coaching Limitation Rule,” AIA officials say they are simply following the organization’s philosophy to help educate boys and girls and not to prepare college athletes.

The proposal, the AIA contends, would equalize member schools practice opportunities, protect coaches from an excessive amount of uncompensated involvement, encourage students to not specialize in special interests and foster well-rounded individuals.

Europe bound

Last summer, Payson High School volleyball star Shea Hatch traveled to Australia where she was a member of an Arizona team that played in an international tournament.

Next summer, she and her teammates could have the opportunity to showcase their skills in Europe.

The Goodwill ambassador is currently accepting applications for high school players to participate in the Goodwill Volleyball exchange to Europe in July of 2003.

Members of this team will represent their country and community in volleyball tournaments to be played in London, Paris, Geneva and Venice. The program is open to all players age 15 to 20 years old.

Call (425) 255-8102 for more information.

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