College athletics: BPCC to add track and field

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Charlie Cavell, BPCC Athletic Coordinator

Beginning with the 2019-20 school year, Bossier Parish Community College will add men’s and women’s indoor and outdoor track and field to its list of sports athletic director John Rennie announced Tuesday.

“We are excited for the opportunity to grow our department with the addition of indoor and outdoor track and field,” said Rennie. “Adding track and field for both the indoor and outdoor seasons will allow us to offer more opportunities for student-athletes to continue their athletic careers while receiving an excellent education at BPCC.”

Current BPCC cross country coach Kent Falting will also serve as the head men’s and women’s track coach.

“I could not be more excited to be starting a track program at BPCC,” said Falting. “We live in one of the most talented track areas in the country, and now we will be able to serve that talent by offering a quality program for kids to continue to chase their dreams of running collegiate track”

In addition to current assistant coach Aaron Megee, Falting is adding Byrd track coach Juan Plaza to his staff.

“Juan Plaza and I have been great friends for years and have always pondered what kind of program we could build together,” said Falting. “Thanks to BPCC, we finally have the opportunity to find out.”

Plaza’s track and field coaching background extends to 24 years having coached youth track with the River Cities Track Club, middle school and high school track at Ridgewood, Byrd, Airline and Calvary Baptist Academy.

Plaza’s coaching experience also includes being the Louisiana selection chair and head coach for Team Louisiana at the annual Great Southwest Track and Field Classic held at the University of New Mexico.

Plaza has coached three Louisiana Gatorade Track Athletes of the Year (2001, 2002, 2017), seven Louisiana classification record holders and four composite state record holders, 12 state champions combining for 26 individual state titles, and one Class 5A State Championship Team with the 2017 Byrd Lady Jackets. 

With the addition of men’s and women’s, indoor and outdoor track and field, BPCC now offers 10 sports that compete at the Division I level of the National Junior College Athletic Association.

The BPCC coaching staff will be conducting cross country as well as track and field tryouts on Tuesday, May 7 at Parkway High School. The tryouts begin at 6 p.m. on the Parkway track, which is located between the main school building and the field house at 2010 Colleen Drive in south Bossier City.