FVL football, soccer fields may not be ready for fall after vandalism


    Four athletic fields at Fox Valley Lutheran High School in Appleton were damaged by vandals in fall 2017 and March 2018. (FVL photo)

    APPLETON, Wis. (WLUK) -- High school sports teams at a Fox Valley school may not be able to use their home fields this fall because of vandalism.

    Fox Valley Lutheran High School leaders say the vandalism began last fall, but the most extensive damage happened in March. Someone drove a Jeep through four fields, including two practice fields and the competition football and soccer fields.

    "These acts of vandalism have robbed our girls' soccer team of their home spring season and now will be taking away the upcoming fall seasons from both our football and boys' soccer teams," FVL Director of Operations Martha Baldwin said in a news release. "It saddens me to think about what all has been stolen from our players, coaches, and fans."

    The school's principal, Steve Granberg, said it's disappointing.

    "We had a lot of seniors on that team that didn't get to play any home senior games," said Granberg.

    The school hopes to have everything ready by the 2019 spring season.

    Damage to the fields was estimated at $250,000. Activities director Shawn Hill says the fields will need to be stripped down, regraded and resodded. The practice fields will be reseeded. The vandalism may have damaged the sprinkler system as well.

    The school is offering a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and prosecution of the person or people responsible.

    Anyone with information is asked to call Appleton police at (920) 832-5500 or use the Report feature on the police department's smartphone app, which is available for both iPhone/iPad and Android devices.

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