Football rules clinics start up next week

Robert N. CourterEpiscopal High School Class of 2012National Merit SemifinalistSon of Laura Courter and Stephen Courter Baton Rouge, LA
Robert N. CourterEpiscopal High School Class of 2012National Merit SemifinalistSon of Laura Courter and Stephen Courter Baton Rouge, LA

A series of Louisiana High School Athletic Association football rules clinics for coaches will begin Aug. 12 at Lutcher High.

Other rules clinics are set for Aug. 13 at Jennings High, Aug. 14 at Ruston High, Aug. 19 at the LHSAA office and Aug. 20 at Pineville High.

All meetings are set for 7 p.m. A make-up clinic is set for 3 p.m. Aug. 25, also at the LHSAA office.

Aug. 12 is a key date for another reason. It’s also the first official day of practice for LHSAA football, cross country, swimming and volleyball teams. Football teams are allowed to wear full gear for the first time Aug. 15.

Courter nationals bound

Former Episcopal gymnast Neal Courter is the only senior elite gymnast from Louisiana scheduled to compete at the U.S. Gymnastics Championships Aug. 15-18 in Hartford, Conn.

Courter qualified by winning the vault and placing ninth in the floor exercise at the national qualifier meet held at the U.S. Olympic Training Center in Colorado Springs on July 15.

A total of 14 out of 67 competitors qualified. Competitors included national team members and past Olympians. Courter earned All-America status as a freshman at William & Mary in the spring by placing third in the vault at the NCAA championships.

Johnsons in national event

Ascension Christian’s Kennan Johnson and her mother, Natalie, a former Parkview Baptist standout, have advanced to the National Family Tennis Championships in New York.

The Johnsons are one of five family doubles teams competing Aug. 23-26 at the USTA/Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in New York.

More than 30 teams from nine states competed in a regional competition last week in Kansas City, Mo.

Recruiting, etc.

Plaquemine High defensive lineman Davon Godchaux has reversed field on when he will announce his college choice. After saying he planned to make his decision four months earlier than planned Aug. 23, Godchaux announced early last week that he’s decided to wait until Dec. 28.

Parkview Baptist baseball players Gage Pickett and Cody Daigle have signed with colleges.

Pickett signed with Southeastern Louisiana University; Daigle signed with East Central Mississippi Community College. Daigle and Pickett played key roles to help PBS win the Class 3A state title last spring.

Gibson cleared

Zachary High senior Quinton Gibson was cleared by a doctor to play football last week. He is expected to be a reserve lineman and special teams player.

Gibson, the subject of a recent feature story in The Advocate, got the OK from doctors in Shreveport to play just eight months after surgery to correct a club foot.

Coaching moves

Michael Banks retired as boys basketball coach at Belaire.

Banks served as an assistant at several local schools before spending 17 years as head coach at Belaire.

During Banks’ tenure, Belaire won a district title in Baton Rouge’s always-competitive Class 4A league and also claimed the East Baton Rouge Parish Tournament title.

Longtime Plaquemine and Woodlawn football coach Don Jones will be an assistant to another ex-local coach, Dennis Lorio, at Morgan City High.

Former Bethany Christian basketball coach David Castillo was hired as an assistant baseball coach at Family Christian Academy.

Castillo, the son of longtime Morning Advocate prep editor Ted Castillo, coached at New Iberia’s Assembly Christian through last season.

Calob Leindecker, a former Parkview Baptist player, is now an assistant football coach at Dunham.

Leindecker provided one of the area’s most inspirational stories in recent years when he returned to football as a holder on kicks after having part of his leg amputated because of an accident in which his leg was pinned between two vehicles.

Job opening

St. Amant High seeks a head boys basketball coach. The deadline to apply is Friday.

Fax résumés to St. Amant Athletic Director David Oliver at (225) 391-6037 or send email to

Résumés can also be submitted by mail to Oliver, Athletic Director, St. Amant High, 12035 La. 431. St. Amant, LA 70774.

Boosters, tourney sought

Plaquemine High’s Green Devil Booster Club will hold its first meeting at 6:30 p.m. Aug. 15 in the Plaquemine gym. New members are welcome.

PHS also seeks a baseball tournament from March 13-15. Call Plaquemine Athletic Director Scott Allen at (225) 202-5108 for details on both items.

Basketball officials meeting

The Baton Rouge Area Basketball Officials Association will begin its series of weekly meetings at 6 p.m. each Wednesday at Family Christian Academy gym Sept. 4.

Veteran officials and anyone interested in becoming an official should plan to attend.

Contact president Harry Jenkins at (225) 892-7042 or assignment secretary Virgil Pratt at (225) 485-0800 for details.

Zachary Hall of Fame

Zachary High is accepting nominations for its Athletic Hall of Fame. The deadline to submit nominations is Sept. 1.

Contact ZHS Athletic Director Joey Sanchez for a nomination form at Nominations for athletes who competed at Northwestern High School also will be accepted. Call Sanchez at (225) 654-2776, ext. 529 or (225) 287-3037 for details.