The Valley District will look a little different to Gobblers Fans
by: Micah Morris
The sounds of students roaming the halls of Broadway High School is still weeks away. As the summer churns on, the school remains silent, except for the sounds of construction taking place as BHS undergoes an extensive renovation. But in a few short weeks, the school will once again be bustling, with the sounds of teachers and students busy with their studies and their social lives.
But things are changing at Broadway High School, and the community will soon see these changes, some of which will impact BHS Athletics.
One of the first things that fans will notice is a new concession stand and restrooms located at the stadium. Throughout Spring and Summer, the new building has risen at the south end of the football field. The new concession stand and restrooms are expected to be ready for the opening football game, when Broadway hosts Fluvanna County on August 25.
New Valley District Opponents
Broadway High School has a proud tradition in the Valley District. One of the four “long-time members” of the district, BHS joins Spotswood, Turner Ashby and Harrisonburg as the longest tenured schools in the storied district. Over the last two decades, many teams have entered and left the district for a variety of reasons. Central (Woodstock), Waynesboro and Fort Defiance are just a few of the schools that have called the Valley District home but have since moved to other districts. With the new VHSL re-alignment plan beginning this year, the former five team Valley District gets a jolt as it welcomes two new schools.
Broadway, Harrisonburg, Spotswood, Turner Ashby and Rockbridge County have made up the five-team district for the last few years, but beginning this fall, the district welcomes in East Rockingham and William Monroe, with Rocktown High School scheduled to join upon it’s opening. For the first time in over ten years, all Harrisonburg City and Rockingham County Schools will be included in the same district. BHS is familiar with both East Rockingham and William Monroe, as both have been common opponents for various Gobblers sports teams over the most recent seasons.
East Rockingham High School is located in Elkton, Virginia and has most recently been a member of the Bull Run District and in Region 2B, but with the growth on the eastern end of the county, ERHS has been bumped up to Region 3C, the same Region as BHS. The Eagles have enjoyed a lot of athletic success over the past ten years, including being the home of Tyler Nickel, the leading all-time scorer in Boys Basketball history in the Virginia High School League. After graduating from ERHS, Nickel played collegiately at North Carolina and has since transferred to Virginia Tech.
William Monroe, located in Stanardsville, Virginia, will move to the Valley District after being a member of the Northwestern District. William Monroe will be one of two teams (Harrisonburg being the other) that will not be a member of Region 3C. Instead, the Green Dragons will be members of Region 3B. William Monroe has been a common opponent on the gridiron for BHS over the last several years, but the two schools will compete as district foes for the first time. William Monroe, has a history of success in athletics as well, most recently sending Girls Basketball Player Samantha Brunelle to Women’s Basketball power Notre Dame after she finished a wildly successful career at WMHS. Brunelle has since transferred to the University of Virginia, where she is currently a member of the Cavaliers Women’s Basketball team.
Rocktown High School, the much anticipated and much discussed new high school in Harrisonburg, will join the Valley District upon completion of the construction and opening of the school. Rocktown will be known as the Raptors.
A Big Thank You!
Another change that will take place at BHS for the upcoming year will be a new leader at the school. Longtime Principal, Donna Abernathy, accepted the position of Assistant Superintendent of Innovation and Learning with Rockingham County Public Schools, a position which she began in early July. We have very much enjoyed working with Mrs. Abernathy over the last nine years and will miss seeing her around BHS. She has always been very welcoming and supportive of the Gobblers Sports Network. We would like to Say a Big Thank You to her and wish Mrs. Abernathy well in her new position within RCPS.
As Ben wrote last month, there are so many Thank you’s to go around. It’s important to recognize that the Gobblers Sports Network is lucky to have incredible relationships with BHS Administration and Coaches. We would like to Thank BHS Athletic Director, Ryan Ritter for his unwavering support over the last nine years and for being so accommodating for us for all the sports we cover. We would also like to thank the BHS Coaches, especially Danny Grogg (Football), Dwight Walton (Boys Basketball), Jeremy Fulk (Girls Basketball), George Laase (Baseball) and Becky Cantrell (Softball) for allowing the Gobblers Sports Network to be part of their teams.
Exciting things are on the horizon for BHS Athletics and the Gobblers Sports Network. With Fall Sports around the corner, be on the lookout for Ben Elliott’s fall sports preview!