Baseball and softball are returning to St. Helena Parish’s high school.
St. Helena College and Career Academy Athletic Director and head football coach Brandon Brown worked to bring the sports back for area athletes.
Brown said that when he came to St. Helena two years ago, there were very few sports offered at the school — only football, basketball and track.
Along with the construction of the new facilities, one of the things administrators wanted to change was the culture at the school.
“We want to help our kids in any avenue that we can. We have wonderful kids at our school, but with St. Helena being a rural community, they don’t have anything to do,” Brown said. “A lot of times, if they have idle time, that’s when they tend to get into trouble. We wanted to eliminate those problems by adding more sports.”
Brown said plans also are in the works for a volleyball program.
Superintendent Kelli Joseph said she is excited to offer more athletic programs for the students.
“Coach Brown came into St. Helena with a clear vision to develop a robust athletic program for our students that will foster high levels of success on and off the field. He has made significant progress within a very short amount of time,” Joseph said. “Adding baseball and other sports within the athletic program is just another step he’s taken toward achieving his vision. We are all very proud of his accomplishments.”
Physical science teacher Keidron Davis will be the head baseball coach, and eighth-grade math teacher and head basketball coach Daranecia Williams will coach softball.
Davis said the program will face challenges.
“I have confidence in our kids to succeed and I know they will exhibit good sportsmanship,” Davis said.
Williams is a St. Helena Central High School alumna who played softball at the school.
“I think this is a great thing for our girls; they always ask what more can they do,” Williams said.
With the school starting the league from the bottom, Brown said they will be reaching out to the community for help with getting the plans in motion.
During its Jan. 12 meeting, the Police Jury voted to grant the school access to Charlie Overton Park in Greensburg for practices.
Equipment for the program is needed, Brown said, and any type of assistance from the community residents would be greatly appreciated.
Maintenance on the park is set to begin, and tryouts for baseball and softball will be held in the next couple of weeks, Brown said.
For information regarding the program or to find out how you can help, call coach Brown at (225) 222-4402 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.