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Batesburg-Leesville High School

Panthers Return Most of Staff

By: Jay Hendrix

The 2018-19 school year will kick off in a few weeks with plenty of familiar faces around Batesburg-Leesville High School. The biggest change came in the front office as Gary Phillips retired from the Athletics Director position after 30 years in the position and 54 years with the school. However, the administration didn’t look far for his successor as Head Football Coach and Assistant Athletic Director Gary Adams was named in the spring. Eddie Hopper and Brantley Buzhardt were named Assistant Athletic Directors at the start of summer and will have numerous duties in addition to their coaching responsibilities.

Adams will begin his second season at the helm of the football program which he led to a 7-6 finish last season and a third round playoff appearance. Adams is the second B-L product to lead the B-L program in nearly 100 years of existence after playing for coach Phil Strickland in the early and mid-1990’s.

The assistant coaches for the Panthers will see co-defensive coordinators Omar Collier and Shane Bryant return along with Jake Getson on defense. Andy Harris, another B-L alumnus, joins the staff as he comes over from Ridge Spring-Monetta and will coach the linebackers. On offensive Rob Bouknight serves as the coordinator and play caller while Bob Roudybush, and a second Gary Adams return from last season as well. Nelson Chandler comes up from the middle school staff and is joined by new coach Kyle Lynch to round out the staff.

In volleyball the Panthers will see a change as Courtney Ingle stepped down after back to back region championships to focus on family and teaching. Buzhardt had served as the assistant coach and assumed the role of head coach. Gary Price will serve as the head JV coach and Erika Chitcko will return as the middle school coach.

Cross Country will once again be under the direction of Kim Hendrix. Hendrix led the boys and girls teams the past two seasons and won the Region 5-AA championships last season. Girls Tennis will again be under the leadership of Christyann English who led the Panthers to a Region 5-AA championship as well.

Jessica Barr-Dennis and Roudybush will return in the winter as the girls and boys basketball coaches respectively.

 

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