The Cordia High School baseball field is quiet. The season is over. However, on Monday, the Lions took one more loss on the season.
"We noticed the gate was open, the gate is never open," said Coach Joe Melton, "They busted those locks or cut the chains off."
The team's field, dugout, storage units, and bathrooms were broken into, but the situation only got worse for the coach.
"The field equipment, the lawn mower, the tiller that was probably $2,500 worth of stuff. Then they probably got $2,500 to $3,000 worth of uniforms, pullovers, jackets, undershirts," described Melton, "I really got sick to my stomach and I really thought I was going to throw up because I knew how much effort that I put in, my coaching staff put in, as well as the players, parents, and the community to raise money to buy this stuff and now it's gone."
The coach then contacted his players, and word spread around the team. The players couldn't believe what happened.
"They couldn't believe that they (the thieves) would steal from the school, and they thought their stuff was secure here, which I did too," said Melton.
"We want our stuff back because it really affected the kids," added another school official.
With all of the equipment taken, the team will now be forced to replace it which may stunt the coach's plans for the next season.
"The stuff I was going to buy or the trips I was going to take with the kids that will all have to be put on hold, and the money that we raise will have to be used to buy back the uniforms," said Melton.
While the gear is gone, Melton isn't giving in just yet. He says all of the gear has the Cordia logo, a "wishbone C," which he hopes will help them track down the lost equipment.
Melton said he and his coaches are already looking at doing some fundraisers to help the replacement process.
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