Starting this fall, the boys and girls lacrosse programs will transition from club sports to district-sponsored varsity sports at Springboro High School.
The Springboro Board of Education recently approved the move to take over operations of the lacrosse teams from the Springboro Lacrosse Club, which sponsored and funded the team. Lacrosse has been designated as a club sport in the past, but the OHSAA and Greater Western Ohio Conference have made this an official sport and will fall under board policy for interscholastic sports.
The start-up costs for Ohio High School Athletic Association-approved equipment and reconditioning such as heart guards, approved helmets, and chest plates are approximately $40,000. At its July 28 meeting, the board agreed to provide $20,000 from the general fund to assist in these start-up costs and the athletic department will absorb the $20,000 from its athletic budget.
Discussions on this transition began as far back as 2014 and the school district and the Springboro Lacrosse Club have maintained a close working relationship throughout that time, district officials said.
“The relationship between the Springboro Athletic Department and Springboro Lacrosse has never been stronger,” said Austin Rhoads, Springboro Schools athletic director. “The Springboro Lacrosse Club will continue to support the high school lacrosse program, as they have in years past.”
In 2016, upon the adoption of boys’ and girls’ lacrosse by the OHSAA, it was agreed that Springboro High School Lacrosse would be a school sport, but would be funded by the Springboro Lacrosse Club. Now, with the impending adoption of the sport of lacrosse by the GWOC, the decision was made for the Springboro Athletic Department to begin taking over the funding and operations at the beginning of the 2021-22 school year.
District officials told the board that the district will collect gate receipts from games and that it will operate like soccer and should be self-sufficient.
“The efforts of our student-athletes, coaches, and the Springboro Lacrosse Club is a big reason why Springboro Lacrosse is an elite program in Ohio,” Rhoades said. “We’re excited to keep moving forward. Thank you to everyone who has supported this program over the years.”
Head coaches Stefan Schroder (boys lacrosse) and Biz Brink (girls lacrosse) will remain the coaches.
“We are excited to be a part of solidifying lacrosse in the GWOC conference. I look forward to growing the game in (our community) and representing the GWOC across the state of Ohio,” Brink said.
Schroder said, “We’re excited to take this next step in growing the game in the greater-Dayton area. The sport of lacrosse has grown all across the state of Ohio and we look to help lead the charge as Dayton lacrosse continues to grow.”