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A grand opening

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By Mickey Patterson

 CRESTWOOD – The two biggest winners in the history of South Oldham High School sports will be honored March 24 at the dedication of the school’s new sports complex.

Former baseball coach Bill Cofer and tennis player Eric Quigley will be the guests of honor at a celebration that starts at 2:35 p.m. in the school with a spring sports rally and moves outside at 3:40 p.m. to dedicate a complex that includes five new tennis courts, a softball field and a baseball field. “We want to invite all of our ex-athletes and boosters to come out and see it,” SOHS athletic director Mitch Irvin said. “We’re very proud of it.” The baseball field, which will be lighted for the first time, will be named after Cofer the school’s coach  for the first 15 years of its existence.  In his 21-year career, which included stints at Oldham County and Bullitt Central, Cofer won 406 games against 256 losses. He won district titles at all three schools, including 10 in his 15 years at SOHS and also had a pair of regional runner-up teams. Cofer is a member of the state baseball coaches hall of fame. Cofer said he was awestruck by the honor. “It will certainly be a special day for me,” he said. “I was blessed during my time here as the coach to have a set of great assistant coaches, a great group of parents who were willing to do anything and above all else, a lot of special young men I was proud to coach. I have some really special memories in my life of the times we had on the field.” When SOHS opened Cofer was on the ground floor and literally and started work on the first field. “I remember the old field, we walked out there that first day in the fall and it was like a table top, there was not a blade of grass in sight,” Cofer said. “Myself, some parents and eight or 10 of the players sowed all the grass. I have to give that first group of players a lot of credit, they did most of the work.” One facet of the new field Cofer is especially looking forward to are the lights on the new field. “I can’t wait to watch a night game there,” he said. “That’s going to be really special to see those lights on becuase that is the one thing we always wanted to have during my time as coach.” SOHS will unveil the new field with a 5:35 p.m. game against cross county rival North Oldham. Cofer, a former pitcher at Bellarmine University, will throw out the first pitch. The day will also feature a 3:50 p.m. ceremony with the dedication of the softball field and the tennis courts will include court one of the tennis portion being designated The Eric Quigley championship court. Quigley, who graduated from SOHS last year and now plays at the University of Kentucky, won four straight state singles titles at SOHS and will be on hand for the ceremony.  Scheduled to speak at the ceremony are Irvin, Niehoff, school board member and SOHS booster Walt Schumm and superintendent Paul Upchurch.  The event will take place in the gym in the event of rain.   E-mail us about this story at: sports@oldhamera.com