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State soccer tournament moved to Charleston

CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- The state high school soccer tournament is on the move again.

The West Virginia Secondary School Activities Commission announced Wednesday that the event will take place in Charleston at Schoenbaum Soccer Stadium in Coonskin Park and the Trace Fork Complex along Corridor G. Both are turf fields.

The SSAC postponed the state tournament Tuesday to early next week after the remnants of Hurricane Sandy dumped 16 inches of snow on Beckley, which was set to host the event Friday and Saturday on the YMCA Youth Soccer Complex's grass fields.

The state semifinals will be Tuesday, Nov. 6 and the championships Wednesday, Nov. 7. The Class AAA boys and girls games will be at Schoenbaum, while Trace Fork will host the AA-A boys and girls contests. (See Page 2B for pairings and schedule.)

"We hate having to move the tournament from Beckley because of the effort by [tournament directors] David Laraba and Tim Carrico, but we trust their judgment and recommendations," said SSAC executive director Gary Ray in a press release.

Laraba notified the SSAC on Wednesday after a meeting of the state tournament committee that because of the amount of snow on the Cline and Carter Fields, they would not be able to have the site ready by next week.

"In all fairness to the youngsters who will be participating in the state tournament, they need a venue that will not impact the outcome of the game," said Laraba in the release. "It is in the best interest of our sport to move the tournament."

The SSAC administrative staff visited Schoenbaum and Trace Fork on Wednesday and approved the fields.

"We appreciate the cooperation of the two facilities in Charleston for assisting our efforts in finalizing the state soccer tournament," Ray said.

The SSAC said it will work with the Charleston Convention and Visitors Bureau to make necessary arrangements with hotels for schools, officials and fans to find lodging.

Shawn Wheeler, athletic director at George Washington High School, will direct the AAA tournament and Bill Gillispie, athletic director at Charleston Catholic High School, will oversee AA-A.


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