www.wvgazettemail.com http://www.wvgazettemail.com Gazette archive feed en-us Copyright 2016, Charleston Newspapers, Charleston, WV Newspapers Funerals for: May 03, 2016 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT01/305039981 OBIT01 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT01/305039981 Tue, 3 May 2016 00:01:00 -0400 Buzzard, Elta 1 p.m., Keith Full Gospel Church, Keith.


Campbell, William 1 p.m., Cunningham


Carney, Royal 11 a.m., Waybright Funeral Home, Ripley.


Cooper, Alice Noon, Koontz Funeral Home, Hamlin.


Fisher, James 7:30 p.m., Allen Funeral Home Chapel, Hurricane.


Hunt, Bartley 1 p.m., Mounts Funeral Home Chapel, Gilbert.


Jones, Barbara 2 p.m., Matics Funeral Home, Clendenin.


Kersey, Deborah 6 p.m., Chapman Funeral Home, Hurricane.


Kidd, Ilene L. 2 p.m., Keller Funeral Home, Dunbar.


Schmidt, J. Tristan 2 p.m., Maranatha Fellowship, St. Albans.

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Junior R. Bailey http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039996 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039996 Tue, 3 May 2016 00:01:00 -0400 Mr. Junior R. Bailey, 92, of Nitro, passed away peacefully at Genesis Teays Valley Center.

Junior was preceded in death by his parents, William A. "Bill" and Cora H. Landers Bailey, and sisters, Lula M. Bailey, Ruby Landers Shaffer and Judy M. Bailey McLaughlin.

He is survived by his brothers, Tomie Bailey of Poca and William Bailey of Red House; sisters Jessie Barnette of Spring Hill and Mary Young of Nitro; and many nieces and nephews.

Junior is retired from Cabell Huntington Hospital and a former coal miner. He was a member of New Hope Baptist Church, Scott Depot. He was a very religious man, loved life, loved people and was loved by everyone.

The family would like to thank everyone at the Teays Valley Center for taking such good care of Junior and a special thank you to Butch Parsons for taking Junior to church every Sunday.

A tribute to the life of Mr. Junior Bailey will be 11 a.m. Wednesday, May 4, at Gatens-Harding Funeral Home Chapel with Pastor Ken Carter officiating. The family will receive friends one hour prior to the service on Wednesday at the funeral home.

Condolences may be sent to the family by visiting www.hardingfamilygroup.com.

Gatens-Harding Funeral Home, 147 Main St., Poca, is serving the Bailey family.

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William R. Berry http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039987 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039987 Tue, 3 May 2016 00:01:00 -0400 William Ronald Berry, 72, of Danville, died April 29, 2016. Service will be 2 p.m. Wednesday, May 4, at Handley Funeral Home, Danville, with visitation one hour prior.

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Rex E. Browning http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039993 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039993 Tue, 3 May 2016 00:01:00 -0400 Rex Eudell Browning, 94, of Logan, died May 1, 2016. Service will be 11 a.m. Wednesday, May 4, at the First Christian Church of Logan. Visitation will be 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, May 3, at Honaker Funeral Home, Logan, and one hour prior to the service Wednesday at the church.

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Luna Rebecca Bryant http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039984 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039984 Tue, 3 May 2016 00:01:00 -0400 Luna Rebecca Bryant, 79, of Dundalk, Md., formerly of Buckeye, died May 1, 2016. Service will be 11 a.m. Saturday, May 7, at Kimble Funeral Home, Marlinton. Visitation will be 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, May 6, at the funeral home.

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Henry D. Fox http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039989 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039989 Tue, 3 May 2016 00:01:00 -0400 Henry D. Fox, 87, of Strange Creek, died April 29, 2016. Service will be noon Wednesday, May 4, at Richard M. Roach Funeral Home, Gassaway, with visitation one hour prior.

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Beatrice Hagley http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039986 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039986 Tue, 3 May 2016 00:01:00 -0400 Beatrice "Kay" Hagley, 65, died April 30, 2016. Service will be 1 p.m. Thursday, May 5, at River Cities Community Church, Huntington. Visitation will be 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, May 4, at Heck Funeral Home, Milton.

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Arlie Ray Hershman & Tina Marie Hershman http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039992 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039992 Tue, 3 May 2016 00:01:00 -0400 Arlie Ray Hershman, 44, and Tina Marie Hershman, 40, both of Charleston, passed away April 23, 2016. Joint memorial service will be 6 p.m. Friday, May 6, at Cunningham-Parker-Johnson Funeral Home, Charleston.

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R. Bruce Karnes http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039994 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039994 Tue, 3 May 2016 00:01:00 -0400 R. Bruce Karnes, 89, of Beacon House, St. Clairsville, Ohio, formerly of Gallagher, W.Va., died peacefully on Sunday, May 1, 2016 at Forest Hill Care Center, St. Clairsville, Ohio.

He was born Feb. 12, 1927 in Lynchburg, Va., the son of the late Robert C. and Minnie May Broughman Karnes.

He was educated in the Lynchburg schools and graduated from Virginia Commercial Business College in 1947. He worked for Imperial Colliery Company in Burnwell and was a purchasing agent and general manager of Paint Creek Supply Company, where he retired in 1982. He lived in West Virginia for 60 years and was a resident of Lynchburg for six years.

He was a member of the Shrine, Past Master of the Blue Lodge, Past Worthy Patron Eastern Star, Scottish Rite KCCH, 32nd Degree KCCH, Past Commander Knights Templar and Past High Priest Royal Arch.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his first wife, Doris Coleman Karnes; second wife, Ruth Miller Karnes; and son-in-law, William "Bill" Trimble.

Survivors include three daughters, Ann Trimble of Wheeling, June (Greg) Oliver of Melrose, Fla., and Tina (John) Poore of Lynchburg, Va.; five grandchildren, Michele (Tim) Porter, Kerri (Chris) Hanley, Leslie (Trevor) Browning, Blake Poore and Heather (Zane) Winters; and five great-grandchildren, Morgan, Molly and Andrew Porter and Ethan and Olivia Hanley.

There will be no visitation.

Private services and interment will be held at the convenience of the family.

Arrangements entrusted to Grisell Funeral Home and Crematory, 1 Ridgecrest Road, Bethlehem/Wheeling, W.Va.

Sympathy expressions at www.grisellfuneralhomes.com.

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June Lambert http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039988 OBIT http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/OBIT/305039988 Tue, 3 May 2016 00:01:00 -0400 June Lambert, 79, of Newton, died April 28, 2016. Graveside service will be 2 p.m. Wednesday, May 4, at Zion Hill Cemetery, Elana. There will be no visitation. Arrangements by John H. Taylor Funeral Home, Spencer.

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Spring into Gardening coming to Coonskin http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/ARTICLE/160509880 ARTICLE http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/ARTICLE/160509880 Tue, 3 May 2016 12:47:34 -0400 Clint Thomas By Clint Thomas To learn about the birds and the bees -- literally -- and other agricultural matters, the Kanawha County Extension Service Master Gardeners will host a Spring into Gardening event on Saturday, May 7 at Coonskin Park in Charleston.

Spring into Gardening will enable participants to learn some new gardening techniques and get ready for a successful gardening year.

Spring into Gardening will include a keynote address and two breakout sessions.

The keynote address will be "Gardening on the Edge: The Latest Trends in Horticulture" by Bryce Lane, host of the Emmy Award-winning show "In the Garden with Bryce Lane."

The first breakout session will be "Raised-Bed Gardening," presented by Kanawha County West Virginia University Extension Service Agent John Porter.

The second breakout session will include "Attracting Birds to the Garden," to be presented by Doren Burrell; "Gardening in Containers: The Trend that Keeps on Growing," led by Lane; and "Attracting and Protecting Bees" from the Boots to Bees Veterans's Ag Program.

Spring into Gardening will take place from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the Coonskin clubhouse.

The Master Gardeners will host a plant sale during the event, as well.

Tickets are $10 each and can be ordered online at: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/spring-into-gardening-tickets-24263150737

Additionally, Porter will host a free workshop on incorporating perennials into your vegetable garden on Saturday, May 14. Porter's workshop will take place from 10 a.m. to noon at the Habitat for Humanity Community Center, 815 Court St., Charleston.

To register for the perennials workshop, go to: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/perennials-in-the-veggie-garden-tickets-20517724065?aff=ehomefriend

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Bill Cole endorses Donald Trump for president http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ01/160509881 GZ01 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ01/160509881 Tue, 3 May 2016 12:30:26 -0400 David Gutman By David Gutman State Senate President Bill Cole, the Republican candidate for governor, has endorsed Donald Trump for president.

"Next Tuesday I will cast my ballot for Donald Trump for president," Cole said in a prepared statement. "I look forward to working with him in making sure that West Virginia is on the winning end of his efforts to make America great again."

Cole, in his statement, rebuked two Democratic candidates for governor, He did not name them, but businessman Jim Justice and former U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin have declined to say who they support for president.

"I am new to politics and don't believe in offering political answers like some of the Democratic candidates for Governor have offered on who they are supporting for President," Cole said. "They don't want to tell voters the truth because they know Hillary Clinton is unpopular in our state. The third Democratic candidate for governor, state Senate Minority Leader Jeff Kessler, is an outspoken booster of Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.

Cole's endorsement comes a week before the Republican primary and after two straight days when Clinton and her husband, ex-president Bill Clinton, were met with protests during visits to communities in Southern West Virginia, with economies reeling from the fading coal industry.

Trump's campaign has repeatedly said he will visit West Virginia before next week's primary, but has not named a time or place.

Anti-Clinton protests, in both Logan on Sunday and Williamson on Monday, were jammed with Trump signs and supporters.

"He's the only hope we've got," said Harry Mikailian, of Chattaroy, at the Williamson rally. "She [Clinton] says build bridges, I believe in the wall. Let's keep these people out of here, the Mexicans."

Cole's prepared statement credits Trump for speaking out "for revitalizing our coal industry."

"We're all for clean coal, we're going to clean up the coal and start getting coal back into business," Trump told Fox News in January. "I love the people of West Virginia and they have suffered because of President Obama."

Years ago, in a 1990 interview with Playboy, Trump had a much more dismal assessment of coal miners.

"The coal miner gets black-lung disease, his son gets it, then his son," Trump said. "If I had been the son of a coal miner, I would have left the damn mines. But most people don't have the imagination-or whatever-to leave their mine. They don't have 'it.'"

Trump has also called for mass deportations, for a ban on all Muslims entering the country, and for the U.S. to use torture on its enemies. He has spoken approvingly of the use of Japanese internment camps during World War II, among other hugely contentious stances.

"Bill Cole doesn't have to agree with a person on every issue to support them," Cole spokesman Kent Gates said. "Bill Cole believes Donald Trump is the best person to help West Virginia overcome the devastating impact President Obama's policies have had on West Virginia."

At the Williamson protest, Willard Justice, of Williamson, wouldn't say Trump will bring back the coal industry, but said he'd do "everything in his power."

"Somebody told me the other day Trump's a little crazy," Justice said. "I said 'maybe crazy's what we need right now.'"

Reach David Gutman at david.gutman@wvgazettemail.com, 304-348-5119 or follow @davidlgutman on Twitter.

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Tax pledge could affect WV budget talks http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ01/160509882 GZ01 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ01/160509882 Tue, 3 May 2016 11:59:15 -0400 Phil Kabler By Phil Kabler One factor contributing to the now 52-day state budget impasse could be that one-fourth of the members of the House of Delegates have signed Republican political activist Grover Norquist's no tax increase pledge.

Norquist's Americans for Tax Reform has also sent letters to 2016 candidates for state offices, asking them to sign the "Taxpayer Protection Pledge," which calls on legislators to "oppose and vote against any and all efforts to increase taxes."

The organization's pledge database lists 25 incumbent legislators as having signed the pledge, although the database appears to inadvertently list two current delegates as no longer serving in the House.

The database lists one senator, Sen. Robert Karnes, R-Upshur, and 24 delegates as having signed the pledge.

However, the number of delegates actually appears to be 26, since the database erroneously lists Delegate Ron Walters, R-Kanawha, as inactive, with the notation, "defeated general (election)." (Walters defeated Democrat Sally Shepherd in the 2014 general election.) It also lists Delegate Larry Faircloth, R-Berkeley, as "retired." (Faircloth is running for state treasurer but continues to serve in the House.)

House Finance Chairman Eric Nelson, R-Kanawha, declined to comment Monday on whether having one-fourth of the House committed to a no new taxes pledge is complicating negotiations on closing a shortfall of at least $270 million in order to pass a balanced 2016-17 state budget.

However, Nelson did explain why he personally chose not sign the pledge.

"One reason I did not sign that is that you don't know what's going to happen in the next five, 10, or 20 years," he said. "Down the road, circumstances can change."

Nelson added, "Some current members may be asking themselves that same question."

Earlier in the impasse, 13 delegates sent a letter to House Speaker Tim Armstead, R-Kanawha, opposing any tax increases, and calling for budget shortfalls to be closed entirely through spending cuts. Seven of the 13 delegates also signed the ATR no tax pledge.

That letter prompted House Minority Leader Tim Miley, D-Harrison, to also write Armstead, asking if Armstead is in agreement with the pledge to oppose any new taxes.

"If so, let's take consideration of tax increases off the table and move forward collectively as a Legislature and begin discussing where budgetary cuts will have to be made to pass a balanced budget," Miley wrote in a letter that he also sent to Senate President Bill Cole, R-Mercer.

Miley said Monday he's had no response from either Armstead or Cole.

"It would be nice that they would confirm tax increases are off the table so we can talk about what cuts can be made," Miley said.

Since the leaders haven't responded to the letter, Miley said, "Obviously, they haven't taken tax increases completely off the table."

He said he's concerned that the longer the budget impasse goes on, any support for tax increases among legislators will be "falling by the wayside."

Norquist founded ATR in 1985 with the intent of opposing all tax increases as a matter of principle.

In the letter to candidates, ATR notes that there are there on no exceptions to the no tax pledge.

"Tax-and-spend politicians often use "emergencies" to justify increasing taxes," the letter states. "In the unfortunate event of a real crisis or natural disaster, legislators should cut spending in other areas instead of aggravating the situation."

However, the letter notes that the ATR does not oppose tax increases that are tied to offsetting tax cuts of at least equal amounts.

Delegates listed on the ATR database as having signed the no tax pledge include: Arvon, O'Neal, Rupie Phillips, Canterbury, Cooper, Stansbury, Frich, Hamrick, Upson, Folk, Ihle, Rodighiero, Blair, Sobonya, Rowan, Overington, Josh Nelson, Howell, Householder, Gearhart, Allen Evans, Moffatt, and Marcum.

Reach Phil Kabler at philk@wvgazettemail.com, 304 348-1220, or follow @PhilKabler on Twitter.

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West Virginia American Water seeks additional rate hike http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ01/160509883 GZ01 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ01/160509883 Tue, 3 May 2016 11:50:59 -0400 CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - West Virginia American Water is asking state regulators to approve a 1.9 percent surcharge on customers' bills to fund infrastructure replacement projects.

The water utility said in a news release that it filed an application Friday with the Public Service Commission of West Virginia seeking approval for the rate hike.

The 1.9 percent increase would equal an 89-cent monthly increase for a typical customer who uses 3,204 gallons.

The request comes two months after the PSC approved a 15.1 percent increase in water rates in February.

The company says it needs the extra money to recover $32.5 million of its planned $107 million of capital investments in 2016 and 2017.

The water utility says the rate increase would go toward updates for aging infrastructure.

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Addiction recovery center planned for Parkersburg http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ01/160509885 GZ01 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ01/160509885 Tue, 3 May 2016 10:10:46 -0400 PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (AP) - A West Virginia organization is planning to open an addiction recovery center in Parkersburg.

News outlets report that of West Virginia will open a peer-operated recovery facility for between 60 and 100 men thanks to recently approved funding by the Department of Health and Human Resources Bureau for Behavioral Health and Health Facilities.

The recovery center will be housed in a former National Guard armory. Recovery Point Executive Director Matt Boggs says renovations on the facility's site will take between six months and a year to be completed once they begin.

The center will, at no cost to the individual, house men suffering from alcohol and substance abuse for an expected duration of between eight and 12 months.

Recovery Point already has locations in Huntington and Bluefield. A Charleston facility for women is slated to open in September.

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Around WV: May 3, 2016 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ01/160509886 GZ01 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ01/160509886 Tue, 3 May 2016 08:51:37 -0400 Erin Beck By Erin Beck In Around West Virginia: a resurgence of crack cocaine, free college courses for women in poverty, hundreds of auto claims after a hail storm, and more.

n Police in Harrison County say crack cocaine is making a comeback, WDTV reports. Chief Deputy Jeff McAtee says the sheriff's department is actively working six to 12 cases.

n Bluefield College started a free, three-week educational program for women in poverty, The Register-Herald reports. Participants will live on campus from May 15 to June 4. The newspaper reports that the program includes "academic study, cultural experiences, personal development, job search training, college preparation and leadership development."

n A man who allegedly robbed a convenience store, killed the clerk and then killed himself last week showed signs of a crisis, according to the Princeton Times. Two days before the alleged robbery, he wrote on Facebook "What if i came up missing I wonder how many people would actually care!!!" Shortly before the alleged robbery, he wrote "A friend would be great right now."

n State Farm has handled 260 homeowner and property claims and 830 auto claims as a result of a hail storm Thursday in Taylor County, according to MetroNews. State Farm spokesman Dave Phillips said in an average year the state sees only about 300 auto claims from hail.

Reach Erin Beck at erin.beck@wvgazettemail.com, 304-348-5163, Facebook.com/erinbeckwv, or follow @erinbeckwv on Twitter.

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Event to honor fallen law enforcement officers in WV http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ01/160509887 GZ01 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ01/160509887 Tue, 3 May 2016 08:48:12 -0400 CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - Fallen law enforcement officers will be honored at the state Capitol Complex.

A ceremony is scheduled Tuesday in the Culture Center in Charleston. A procession will include the placing of a wreath at the Fallen Partner Memorial on the Culture Center plaza.

A representative of Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin will speak at the event, which is open to the public.

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One in custody following police pursuit http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ01/160509888 GZ01 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ01/160509888 Tue, 3 May 2016 08:22:34 -0400 Staff reports By Staff reports One person is in custody following a short police pursuit, according to a Kanawha County Metro 911 dispatcher.

The pursuit began at about 7:45 a.m. in the 5300 block of MacCorkle Avenue Southwest in South Charleston and ended near the Dunbar Toll Bridge.

One suspect fled, the dispatcher said. Police are looking for that person.

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Mitch Vingle: Beer here? Marshall might start selling suds at games http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ02/160509889 GZ02 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ02/160509889 Tue, 3 May 2016 00:46:57 -0400 Mitch Vingle By Mitch Vingle If there's a topic folks in the Mountain State sit up straight for it's beer.

When WVU decided to sell beer at its football games back in 2011, headlines were made. Actually, good headlines were made. Not only were concession sales up ($516,000 in beer sales in the first year alone), calls, arrests and charges filed to police were down after the school canceled the "pass-out" policy. Once you went into the game, you could not leave and return.

In March, the school announced the policy has been expanded to basketball games. In recent years, only club-level patrons could purchase beer. Now, if the Coliseum is deemed open for business, the general public will be able to buy beer as well.

In Huntington, Marshall athletic director Mike Hamrick has been watching. He sees that, according to WVU, the Mountaineers have made $2.88 million selling beer over five years. And it seems Thundering Herd fans are getting closer to the option at their football games.

"We have not made a decision yet," Hamrick said. "We're in the process of evaluating it. We do sell beer in the stadium, but it's in the Big Green Room and people aren't allowed to take it out into the stadium.

"We're going to continue selling beer in the Big Green Room, but now we're trying to decide whether people can bring it into the stadium and whether we will sell it in particular areas. We haven't made that decision yet."

Hamrick has a little different situation on his hands than that in Morgantown. Tailgating in the Joan C. Edwards Stadium both before the game and at halftime is a time-honored tradition. Also, ticket sales are more of a struggle in Huntington. The last thing Hamrick wants to do is tick off those buying season tickets.

"We're not going to stop the pass-out policy," he said. "Most schools don't allow that, but they've allowed that here forever and it's not something we're going to change. Our decision is solely whether we're going to sell beer or not."

Hamrick has been deliberate.

"The decision is whether the revenue is worth any headaches, if we have any headaches, which I don't think we will," he said. "We're going to take it slow at first because it's never been done here. It's my understanding it went well in Morgantown [at WVU]. We've looked at other schools as well. What they did in Morgantown was stop the pass-outs. We're not going to do that.

"We're trying to decide whether to allow people to take beer out into the stadium from the Big Green Room and whether to sell beer in the stadium. We hope to have that decided in the next two or three weeks."

Hamrick said there are options to just selling beer to the general public.

"In the SEC, most schools don't sell beer except in premium seating areas," he said. "That's something we're looking into. Do you just sell beer in premium chairback areas? Do you sell it in the whole stadium? Are there sections in the stadium that are alcohol-free for those that don't want that? We're analyzing all that."

nnn

While Hamrick doesn't want to tick off those buying season tickets, he does want to spur MU fans who aren't buying tickets.

"We have to keep getting financial support," he said. "We have to sell more tickets. We don't sell enough tickets. For as good as our football program has been the last three or four seasons under Doc [Holliday], we don't sell enough tickets.

"As good as our schedules have been - and as good as they're going to be - we should be selling more."

Hamrick sighed.

"In the next five years coming to Huntington are North Carolina State, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, Boise State, Navy, East Carolina and some of our old rivals, like Miami of Ohio, Ohio and Appalachian State," he said. "We have great football schedules. We have to sell more tickets and raise more money. It's getting more and more expensive to run a Division I athletic program."

The hope within MU is to keep the athletic program shiny in case openings pop up in a conference like, say, the American Athletic.

"We're slowly getting better competitively because of our facilities," Hamrick said. "It used to be football, football, football. Now, we're a broad-based program.

"You never know what's going to happen. I was in a lot better shape when I was single than I am married. That's because you never knew when that pretty girl was going to walk in the door. You never know what's going to happen.

"The pressure here, though, is what we put on ourselves. And, with the facilities here now, we're putting a lot of pressure on ourselves to win. We just have to generate that revenue to do it."

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UC to host Atlantic Regional softball bracket http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ02/160509890 GZ02 http://www.wvgazettemail.com/article/20160503/GZ02/160509890 Tue, 3 May 2016 00:43:15 -0400 Derek Redd By Derek Redd There was a sour taste in the mouths of the University of Charleston softball players Monday morning as they learned their postseason future during the NCAA regional selection show. The Golden Eagles had entered this past weekend’s Mountain East Conference tournament as its No. 1 seed, but second-seeded West Virginia Wesleyan beat UC twice Sunday for the tournament crown.

Yet that didn’t keep Charleston off its home field for this weekend’s Atlantic Regional tournament.

The Golden Eagles will host one side of the bracket as the region’s No. 2 seed, starting their tournament run at 2:30 p.m. Thursday against No. 7 seed Lock Haven. The double-elimination tournament begins at noon Thursday with a game between No. 3-seed West Chester and No. 6-seed Kutztown. The winners of the two games face each other Friday at 11 a.m., while the losers play Friday at 1:30 p.m.

West Virginia Wesleyan is the region’s No. 1 seed and hosts its end of the bracket in Buckhannon.

“It’s a great feeling,” UC coach Ray Loeser said of the tournament berth. “It’s a testament to these ladies and their mindset and their approach. The thing we’re happiest about is that people get to come see us. We have a great facility and (UC athletic director Bren) Stevens will make sure we put together a top-notch event.”

Before those two losses to the Bobcats, the Golden Eagles (45-9) were riding a 25-game winning streak, the longest of any team in UC athletic program history. They also entered this past weekend ranked 23rd in Division II by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association, the highest Charleston has ever been ranked as a Division II program.

This will be the first back-to-back trips to a national tournament for UC since the 1983 and 1984 seasons. There is plenty to be happy about, but the Golden Eagles still feel a sting from not capturing that MEC tournament title. That will offer plenty of motivation for this weekend, Loeser said.

“I think getting to that moment and having that moment taken had them on edge to get right back on the field,” he said. “They want to get right back at it, to be there and do the things that will help them be successful.”

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