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By Casey Christie / The Californian
BY ZACH EWING Californian staff writer firstname.lastname@example.org
Longtime Garces swimming coach Bill Potter said he was fired without cause from the school.
"They fired me for 'breaking Catholic code,' which is pretty much what the Diocese of Fresno fires you for when they have no reason to fire you," said Potter, who ran the aquatics program at Garces for 16 years and won multiple Central Section championships.
Garces athletic director Lela Steiber confirmed that Potter was no longer coaching at the school but said she could have no further comment. Typically, Garces defers all comment on personnel matters to the Catholic Diocese of Fresno, which could not be reached Wednesday night.
Zak Brown is the Rams' new swimming coach.
Potter said he won't immediately seek another coaching job.
"They absolutely had no reason, and I'm considering (a lawsuit)," said Potter, who declined to comment on further details.
Arena draft Saturday
The U.S. Army Arena Bowl, Kern County's annual high school football indoor all-star game, has a new wrinkle.
The game's player draft will be televised live Saturday at 3 Way Chevrolet at 4501 Wible Rd. in Bakersfield. The draft will begin at noon in the dealership's main showroom and is open to the public. All football-playing seniors who were given all-league honors are encouraged to attend, though they are not guaranteed to be drafted.
The coaching staffs for the game's Black and Gold teams are led by former Fresno State wide receiver Eric Mahanke and longtime local high school coach Rick Van Horne. They can draft seniors from any Kern County team, though a group of 20 selected throughout the season on KBAK-TV's website are guaranteed roster spots.
The Arena Bowl is 7 p.m. April 4 in Rabobank Arena.
Adam Dawson has stepped down as North's track and field coach to spend more time with his family, he said.
Dawson, who will remain the school's cross country coach, had won back-to-back Southeast Yosemite League track titles.
Golden Valley is hiring a junior varsity boys tennis coach. Those interested should contact athletic director Jodi Hardin at (661) 827-0800.
Arvin Hall of Fame
The Bear Boosters Athletic Hall of Fame at Arvin High School will induct its ninth class Feb. 8 at Sycamore Canyon Country Club in Arvin.
The six members of the class are: Gary Sedam (class of 1967), Margie Williams (1967), Charles Anderson (1968), Duane Johnson (1968), Mike Bhone (1971) and Scott Randolph (1991).
The ceremony is open to the public and includes cocktails and a steak dinner.
It begins at 5 p.m., with dinner at 6 and the induction at 7. For ticket information, call Scott Randolph at (661) 979-3103 or Ralph Gonzales at 204-5835.
Liberty graduate and former BVarsity Diver of the Year Lucy LaFranchise returned to Bakersfield on Sunday with the UC Davis women's diving team.
LaFranchise won the dual meet with Cal State Bakersfield, scoring 246.85 in the 1-meter competition and 253.80 in the 3-meter.
BHS alum shines
Bakersfield High product Tim Billingsley scored 27 points for the Orange County Novastars in an American Basketball Association semi-pro basketball game Sunday.
The Novastars beat the San Francisco Rumble, 131-107.
Later in the day, Billingsley chipped in 11 points in a 122-111 loss to the Bay Area Matrix.