Truckee baseball team faces disciplinary action | SierraSun.com
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Truckee baseball team faces disciplinary action

JOHN A. BAYLESS and ABHUTCHISON, Sierra Sun

Six Truckee varsity baseball players were suspended from school and removed from the team before state championships because of an incident involving alcohol which occurred two weeks ago following zone playoffs at Spring Creek, Nev., school officials said. The high school is also looking for a new head baseball coach.

“Some kids made bad choices and some other kids got wrapped up in it,” Tahoe-Truckee High School Principal Dennis LeBlanc said. “We followed our drug and alcohol policy and removed six young men from the team and suspended them from school.”

LeBlanc had no comment about the status of head baseball coach Craig Lawrence, except to say that the high school is looking for a new head coach for the team. Two junior varsity coaches led the team at state championship playoffs, where the Wolverines were knocked out after two losses.

Lawrence, who coached baseball for the past two years, was not a teacher. The principal has the authority to hire coaches and let them go, LeBlanc said.

Lawrence declined comment on the matter Tuesday.

LeBlanc said the incident came to his attention when complaints were made about the behavior of Fernley students after playoffs, including complaints that the Fernley students were out after curfew. Both teams were housed in the same hotel.

“I called their principal to let him know what their kids were doing,” LeBlanc said. “He then told me what their investigation had revealed. We conducted our own investigation and found out what had occurred.”

Superintendent Pat Gemma said the six players were found in possession of alcohol and were dismissed from the team.

“The bottom line is that the kids didn’t follow the rules,” he said. However, Gemma said that some parents are upset with the school’s ruling.

“Four of the six parents have called,” he said. “They feel the punishment did not fit the crime. The students were suspended from school for five days and will lose some of their social activities.” Seniors among the group will still be allowed to graduate, and will return to school Friday. Gemma said he stands behind LeBlanc’s decision.

“I think the principal handled it exactly right,” Gemma said. “Had he not done what he did, he would have been criticized for looking the other way.”


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