FREDERICK — Frederick High will have its same athletic programs for this upcoming prep school year. But the Warriors will have a few new toys to play with in 2012-13.
With the school moving to a new building this year, each and every Warriors program will benefit from improvements to its athletic facilities.
“Athletically, we made out quite nicely,” Frederick athletic director Kris Keith said. “I think our public is excited with it, our kids are excited with it and it’s something that hopefully will improve attendance numbers. At the same time, those coaches are going to have to step up our games and give people a reason to come out and watch our teams.
“If you’re going to have a bigger house, you’re going to have to step up your performance levels and get things cooking in there.”
The Warriors may not be taking the city’s gifts lightly, but they were certainly a long time coming. Many of the old building’s facilities needed repair, including gym bleachers and the outdoor track — the poor condition of which caused the Warriors to cancel their annual Powwow track meet last spring.
“We didn’t want to get a kid hurt,” Keith said. “We could have pulled it off but you don’t want to put that meet on and deal with complaints about the high jump area and a crack in the track and stuff like that. It’s going to be back on the schedule this year.”
With their home track meet back in the works, the upgraded facilities also provide the Warriors more bargaining chips in hope of hosting other district and regional athletic events.
Keith said the athletic staff is also hoping the new facilities will encourage greater participation in athletics among the student body. For those who already participate, they’ve gained valuable resources to aid their athletic development.
“If these kids don’t get bigger and stronger after spending time in there, it’s their own fault,” Keith said. “There is just about everything imaginable.”
The new Frederick High School, for which the St. Vrain Valley School District budgeted $37.9 million, includes two new gyms in the athletic wing on the south end of the building. The main gym seats around 1,600.
Between the two gyms, there are two 12-foot garage doors, which can be opened to create an indoor practice track.
The indoor facilities also include an 84-by-42-foot wrestling room, storage, two locker rooms, indoor batting cages and a weight room.
Outside, the new football stadium features a home grandstand with 16 rows stretching from one 35-yard line to the other with a steeper angle for better viewing of the turf field. Capacity is around 1,800 in the bleachers.
In order to put down the bigger, regulation soccer field, the regulation track had to be compressed. The new “fat track,” shortened from end to end by making the curves flatter, is supposed to be faster.
The Warriors now have varsity and junior varsity baseball and softball fields, separated by a commons area.
West of the main stadium are three practice fields for soccer and football. The new school also has six tennis courts and outdoor basketball courts.
In the past, the athletic staff had to be cautious of scheduling multiple events at the same time. The shear size of the new complex allows them to schedule multiple events without difficulty.
The Warriors are proud of their new facilities, which can be observed at an open house on Aug. 21. But they’re still holding true to the traditions established in the old house.
“It’s not like we built a brand new school where there had never been a school,” Keith said. “What I have encouraged our kids to do is put the traditions and all the good stuff that made the old Frederick great and bring them to the new building.”
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