Stratford baseball coach John Chalus is stepping down after the 2014 season to become the school's athletic director. Chalus, who has more than 450 career wins as the head coach at Stratford, replaces longtime athletic director and head football coach Ray Stackley, who retired last month.
The school also will hire Stackley's replacement as head football coach in the next few days. Sources say the list is down to four, which includes current defensive coordinator Joe Marion and current offensive coordinator Dennie McDaniel. Marion has been at the school for more than 20 years while McDaniel is a former all-state offensive lineman at Stratford. Another finalist for the job is current Goose Creek High defensive coordinator Chris Candor, also a former assistant at Stratford.
The school also will hire a new head baseball coach and will have to replace Chalus' position as receivers coach on the varsity football team.
The baseball position is sure to receive major attention. Three former players currently coaching in the area include Berkeley head coach Landy Cox, Bishop England head coach Mike Darnell and Woodland head coach Keith Lowman. Former Chalus assistant Shane Todd is the head coach at Cane Bay.
Track heating up
The Lowcountry hosted two top track and field events in March - the Sandlapper Invitational and the Outback Classic - and the month of April will include two quality meets that will see many of the area's top athletes participating.
Bishop England will host the 10th annual Father Kelly Classic on April 5, and Cane Bay will host the 2014 Cane Bay Invitational on April 12.
Last year's Father Kelly Classic included 16 boys and 16 girls teams. Wando is the defending boys and girls team champions.
Cane Bay coach Greg Hall expects as many as 18 teams in his event.
Speaking of top track and field athletes, Fort Dorchester senior sprinter Jasmine Quinn is well on her way to a possible repeat performance of her state meet performance of 2013. Last May, Quinn won four gold medals (100 meter, 200 meter, 100 hurdles and long jump) at the AAAA state meet.
So far this spring, Quinn holds the state's top times in the 100 (12.22), 200 (25.03) and 100 hurdles (14.27).
Pinewood Prep distance runner Maryah Nasir currently holds the state's top times in the 800-meter run and 1600-meter run. Wando junior Kenny Waring holds the state's top jump in the long jump to date, while the Fort Dorchester boys 4 x 800 relay team has posted the state's fastest time to date.
Already this season, home runs have been plentiful in Region 8-AAAA softball. Summerville's Summer Jenkins has belted five blasts while teammate Taylor Belfiore has hit four homers.
Bluffton slugger Kim Kirby has hit four home runs in her team's first 10 games.
After winning only one game last season, the Stall High baseball team is experiencing great success early this spring. The Warriors opened the 2014 season by winning their first seven games by a combined score of 119-35 under second-year coach Ronnie Sayer. The Warriors swiped 43 bases and hit .409 as a team during their first seven games. Even more positive is that Sayer's roster has 12 underclassmen this spring.
However, victories may be hard to come by from here on out as Stall begins play in a highly competitive region 8-AAA. The region includes Berkeley, Hanahan, James Island and Hilton Head and Orangeburg-Wilkinson. Berkeley and James Island are currently ranked in the class AAA baseball coaches association top 10 poll.