Jason Lobik is calling it “a feather in our cap.”
What the Payson High School athletic director is referring to is an announcement by East ADs that the 2009-2010 regional tournament will be held in Wilson Dome.
“In past years, (the ADs) have always considered our facility too small and the tournament has been held elsewhere,” Lobik said.
“It’s our really big moneymaker, so we want it to be held where we can draw the most people.”
At an East Region administrators meeting held last week, Lobik was able to convince fellow athletic directors that Payson High could successfully host the tournament which will be held in mid-February of 2010.
Lobik lobbied to have the tournament in Wilson Dome with encouragement from ex-Lady Horn basketball coach and school board member Rory Huff.
“Knowing (the athletic directors) thought the dome was too small, I traveled last fall to all the other schools,” he said. “I learned the only other school with really bigger facilities was Round Valley.”
Armed with that information, Lobik almost demanded that the tournament be assigned to Payson, a site that has been traditionally passed over in favor of other schools.
“I pointed out the dome (seating) was adequate and that we were able to host two (basketball) playoff games and the state wrestling tournament in 36 hours, so we could host regionals,” Lobik said.
The tournament will feature 12 teams with the first two rounds played at the site of the higher seed and then the final rounds held over a two-day period in Payson.