RHS has its first lacrosse team
Myron Bill was the principal of Ramona High School when most of the girls’ sports were added to the athletic department. Myron didn’t add them because of any proposition or federal law. He added girls’ sports because he thought that it was the correct thing to do.
Tony Newman is at the helm now and a new girls sport will take the field this spring. Ramona High School will add girls lacrosse to its spring sports schedule.
A group of student athletes and a determined teacher/coach got the ball rolling three years ago. It took lobbying, pleading, fundraising and old-fashioned grit to get the sport added.
Jim Bliss and three junior student-athletes met with me to explain how and why Ramona High School will field lacrosse teams.
When Arisa Sanderson, Jackie Millwood, Brandi Anthony and Vanesa Jones were in ninth grade, they wanted to start a lacrosse team. Why?
“Because it is awesome and we wanted to start a new tradition,” explained Arisa.
Bliss is from New York, where lacrosse is big, and his two daughters played the sport at Poway, so when he was approached he started inquiring how to get a new sport added to the athletic department.
“We started recruiting girls to see how many really wanted to play,” he said. “We started raising money. At first we just were a club and all we did was practice. No letters were given. No games were played. We just practiced.
“Some gave up, but a core of girls got hooked and stuck with it. Last season we actually scrimmaged another school. This season we will field a varsity and a junior varsity team and we will play a complete schedule.”
Bliss’ team may be short on game experience (only one girl has played in a lacrosse game), but they are not lacking when it comes to a GPA (grade point average). Arisa (4.6), Jackie (4.29), Brandi (4.8) and Vanesa (3.7) are great student-athletes and are leaders.
“They have worked very hard to make lacrosse a reality,” said Bliss.
The girls give credit to Bliss. It is amazing how much can be accomplished when nobody cares who gets the credit.
At Poway High it cost every girl $500 to go out for lacrosse. The Ramona girls raised money as a team. They’ve had car washes, candy sales, sold mangos on a stick and roasted corn.
As a result, lacrosse has $3,500 in its account. New uniforms will cost over $1,600. Equipment also had to be purchased.
Bliss anticipates 35 candidates for the two teams. Eighteen games are on the schedule: nine at home and nine on the road.
Ramona will be in the Avocado League. Fallbrook, Mission Hills, San Marcos, Mt. Carmel and Valley Center make up the Avo in lacrosse.
Bliss and the girls have realistic goals.
“We hope to recruit enough freshmen to keep the sport going,” said Brandi. “It will be a learning process. We will get valuable experience and try to be competitive. We aren’t predicting a league title, but we will improve and have fun.”
On March 7, Ramona will play in a jamboree at Patrick Henry High School.
I hope Myron Bill is there.
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