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BCHS field named tops by Dugout Club
Field of dreams
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Bryan County High School maintenance man Don Richardson, softball coach Al Butler and Bryan County Schools assistant director for facilities Allen Clark with the plaque the school received from the Georgia Dugout Club for having the best softball field in Class A in 2009.
In 2009, the Bryan County High School softball field underwent a complete makeover.
Lights were added, dugouts were spruced up or completely rebuilt and the playing surface was upgraded. And that’s just for starters. In all, 17 improvements were noted at the facility, which sits between the school’s baseball and football fields.
It paid off recently, when the Georgia Dugout Club named Lady Redskins Field as the 2009 Field of the Year in Class A.  
Bryan County High School softball coach Al Butler made the nomination, sending photos and a list of the upgades to the GDC.
“I nominated our field because I felt that the efforts of the maintenance staff needed to be recognized,” Butler said. “Mr. Allen Clark and Mr. Donald Richardson spent countless hours working on getting this field in the perfect playing condition for our girls and maintaining it daily.”
Clark, who is head of facilities for Bryan County Schools and also serves as boys basketball coach at BCHS, took the lead role in improving the field. But he said the improvements started at the top.
“The field improvements are really the work of several people,” Clark said. “Our superintendent, John Oliver, clearly expressed the importance of our extracurricular programs and the link to student achievement. He wanted to make sure that students have positive experiences.”
The improvements were praised by Bryan County Board of Education member Dennis Seger, who is actively involved in sports on the North Bryan end and at BCHS.  
“Having our softball field receive such an honor from the Georgia Dugout Club is a testament to the hard work done by Allen Clark and the maintenenance staff, the coaches and volunteer parents that have put such effort into our softball field and school sports program," said
The improvements didn’t come without some expense. The lights cost more than $87,000 in SPLOST funds -- Richmond Hill High School also got new lights courtesy the most recent SPLOST --  and  Clark estimated the district has upped its spending on athletic fields around the county by $2,500-$5,000 compared to the previous school year.
“(But) an important note to mention is that we are spending less in chemicals and fertilizers,” he said. “We had soil tests conducted on each athletic field to be more need specific in applying the right blend of chemical and fertilizer. We are saving about $2,500 in fertilizer with the more field specific approach.”
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