High School Football

Scrambling to find a venue for its home opener, Myrtle Beach went to its last resort

With its home stadium still a construction zone and all other options exhausted, the Myrtle Beach football team finally has a “home away from home” to call its own – at least for Friday night.
With its home stadium still a construction zone and all other options exhausted, the Myrtle Beach football team finally has a “home away from home” to call its own – at least for Friday night. jlee@thesunnews

As if Myrtle Beach football coach Mickey Wilson didn’t already have enough on his mind, it appears Mother Nature has added to it.

Due to soggy field conditions at the Hank Hester Sports Complex at North Myrtle Beach High School, Ashley Booth Field will serve as the venue for which the Seahawks will play their home opener against Charlotte (N.C.) Christian.

Initially, the game was to take place at Coastal Carolina’s Brooks Stadium as the target date for completion of Myrtle Beach’s home digs, Doug Shaw Memorial Stadium, is scheduled for Aug. 31 – just in time for the team’s Thursday night matchup with West Florence. However, with the Chanticleers’ home field also a construction zone, Myrtle Beach had been given permission by rival North Myrtle Beach to use its facility.

“It’s been a bit crazy to say the least,” Wilson said. “The main issue is that North Myrtle Beach’s stadium was holding a lot of water, and we expect quite a bit of rain tomorrow as well. So we didn’t feel all that good about us playing there.”

Kickoff will be at 4 p.m. due to Christian Academy of Myrtle Beach already utilizing the facility on Friday for its contest with Palmetto Christian Academy. Along with the inconvenience of an early start time, Ashley Booth Field’s much more “intimate” dimensions will take some getting used to – fans, players, coaches and referees included.

“It’s not the most convenient situation for fans, that’s for sure,” Wilson said. “For us though, we have become a bit familiar with it during spring, summer and preseason practices. Even though it is much tighter, it is a great facility and venue. We’re just happy the (City of Myrtle Beach) has been extremely accommodating and worked with us in getting this matter resolved.”

After a 51-0 loss to Byrnes in its season opener, the Seahawks will look to get back on the right path against Charlotte (N.C.) Christian, a perennial powerhouse among private schools in North Carolina.

Joe L. Hughes II: 843-444-1702, @JoeLHughesII

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