Challenge awaits Rowzie

Published 12:00 am Monday, August 16, 2004

EXMORE, Va. – When the doors open and school begins at Broadwater Academy, there will be a new coach in town.

Dave Rowzie, who spent 12 years at Ridgecroft School, has been tabbed to take over the reigns of a varsity basketball squad that has struggled of late.

&uot;I’ve been up to meet the kids and I was really pleased,&uot; Rowzie said in a telephone interview from his Virginia Beach home. &uot;They have great facilities and it’s a nice school.

&uot;The program has struggled at the varsity level and I’m looking forward to the chance to come in and build something,&uot; he added.

In fact, the program much resembles the one Rowzie inherited at Ridgecroft when he arrived as the Rams’ skipper some 12 years ago.

After taking over the Ridgecroft program, Rowzie built it into a competitor year-in and year-out in the Tarheel Independent Conference. Included in the run for the Rams were a pair of conference championships and numerous trips to the North Carolina Independent School Athletic Association state tournament.

Rowzie said he wants to build a similar program at Broadwater.

&uot;It reminds me of Ridgecroft when I started there,&uot; Rowzie said. &uot;I look forward to it. I love the fact there is a big challenge waiting there for me.&uot;

Rowzie decided last season to leave the Ridgecroft after 12 years in order to spend more time with his wife and to cut down on the travel back and forth from Virginia Beach.

&uot;I reached a time when I felt it was important to be at home more,&uot; Rowzie said. &uot;Coaching two sports and traveling with those teams made it later getting home and early leaving.

&uot;When I decided to leave and look for something closer to home, I didn’t have a safety net,&uot; he added. &uot;I heard about the opening and went and met with the people at Broadwater and they things just seemed to add up.&uot;

The coach said it felt good to know that the time and energy he had spent coaching was wanted in another place.

&uot;It was nice that someone felt like I would be an asset,&uot; he said. &uot;It makes you feel good that someone wants you.&uot;

And while Rowzie is keyed up about the chance to start at Broadwater, he is equally thankful for the opportunity he was given in Ahoskie.

&uot;When you leave a school after 12 years, it’s sad because you can’t replace the bonds you have with people,&uot; he said. &uot;So many people out there are gold.

&uot;Ridgecroft was a really wonderful place,&uot; he continued. &uot;I was given a lot from my time there and all I can say is thank you.&uot;