Only three of Howard County's 10 high schools without lighted football stadiums will start this fall with lights, Don Disney, the county's coordinator of athletics, said yesterday.

Superintendent Sydney Cousin said on April 14 that each of the county's high schools would have lights installed by the start of the fall season as long the funding had been raised, but it took longer than expected to raise the approximate $1 million needed and secure a bid from a construction company, Disney said.

Howard County school officials will conduct a lottery on Thursday to decide which three high schools will get lights in their football stadiums by the start of the fall sports season, and two more will be selected to have their lights installed by Oct. 1. The remaining six schools will have them in place by Jan. 1.

The county's Board of Education is expected to approve the bid it has received from a local company and will conduct the lottery at approximately 4 p.m. on Thursday during its regularly scheduled meeting in Ellicott City, Disney said. The county's 12th high school, scheduled to open for the 2005-06 school year, will have a lighted stadium by Aug. 1 of next year.

Loudoun Valley Wins

Second-ranked Loudoun Valley started and ended fast in a 9-3 victory over host Smithfield in a Virginia AA softball quarterfinal.

The Vikings (23-3) scored three times in the first and five runs in the seventh to earn a trip to the state semifinals on Friday at Radford University. They will face Turner Ashby in a rematch of the Region II final; the Knights defeated Loudoun Valley, 5-2, last Friday.

Junior Jessica Everhart had three of the Vikings' 11 hits, and Jessica Burke and Britney Hilling added two apiece.

"I knew during batting practice, when everyone was hitting the ball hard, that we were in for a good game," Hilling said. . . .

Junior right fielder Troy Hamilton went 3 for 4 with two RBI and pitcher Kenny Moreland threw a three-hitter as Lee defeated host Colonial Forge, 6-2, in a Virginia AAA baseball quarterfinal. Lee (15-11) will play Western Branch in Friday's state semifinals.

G. Mason Wins

Junior forward Nils Ek scored twice and senior forward Pete Hamill added a goal as George Mason defeated Windsor, 3-0, in a Virginia A boys' soccer quarterfinal in Falls Church.

Ek has scored 10 goals and Hamill 23 for the Mustangs (16-3-1) this season. George Mason will play Radford in a state semifinal at 4 p.m. Friday at Radford University.

-- Jon Gallo and Marty O'Brien