Once again, the athletic director wheel has been spun at Immaculate Heart Preparatory School, and this year Dan Ethridge will assume the role as head of the Class 1A sports programs. Ethridge, who also serves as the school's principal, will share the duties with last year's athletic director, Andy Ortiz. In his second year with Immaculate Heart, Ethridge is the fourth athletic director in as many years. Included in the changes in athletics this year, Immaculate Heart will add golf to its sports repertoire and move its volleyball home games to St. Gregory High School.

Pack it up

The Alpha Packers, a traveling All-Star baseball team composed mostly of members of the Canyon Del Oro Little League, returned from the Triple Crown World Series in Steamboat Springs with a 13th place finish out of 26 teams. After qualifying for the championship bracket, the Packers lost their next two games against the Utah Wolves, 11-6, and the Oklahoma Banditos, 10-9. The Packers finished the tourney 3-2, with wins over the Broomfield Bobcats, Aurora Stars and Parker Sky Sox.

California Dreaming

The Pusch Ridge Christian Academy girls basketball program, the reigning Class 2A state champ, took its dominating act to California in July to compete in the San Diego Classic. The Lions finished 3-2, making this the first year they won more than one game in the 348-team tourney. The trip was a good look at this year's team, said head coach Lonnie Tvrdy, who added that it's the shared common experiences that build team chemistry. Players who impressed in California were post-player Jamie Sheppard and guard Heather Paddock.

Game, set, match

The Tucson Hilton El Conquistador Golf & Tennis Country Club, 10500 N. La CaƱada Drive, has completed the renovation of its tennis facility. The $400,000 makeover of its complex began in May when the entire facility was demolished to be completely rebuilt. Reusing the old asphalt from the courts, workers reinforced the foundation and built the base up to four to six inches deep. The new court, replete with its new colors, purple and green, made with a 6.2 percent oil base, will keep the court from drying out and crumbling. The new color scheme will allow for better visibility.

Football tourney at UA

It may feel like summer still, with temperatures still threatening triple digits, but autumn is coming. On Aug. 8, high school athletic programs took the field to open the 2005 fall sports season. Among them are cross country, girls volleyball, golf, soccer, swimming and, of course, football. With the new athletic year upon us, we already look ahead to the end. In November, Tucson will play host to one of the Class 4A football championships at Arizona Stadium on the campus of the University of Arizona. With the new class configuration - both 4A and 5A have been split into two divisions - four championship games will be played at the season's conclusion. Arizona State University will play host to three of the games, while Tucson gets the fourth.

The Show must go on

Through its first two games in the California

Competitive Youth Baseball World Series, The Show baseball squad is undefeated. The Northwest-based squad of Tucson 13-year-olds entered the tournament as the defending champ and picked up right where it left off, winning its first game Aug. 7, 16-2 over the Southern California Arsenal behind Jake Cole's two-run home run and Mike Bregante's two RBI performance. The next day, fueled by Joseph Padilla's two-hitter, The Show shut down the Orange County Cougars, 4-2, on the campus of University of California Fullerton. Mario Sanchez closed out both games, fanning five of six batters in two innings of work.

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