Saxony puts soccer on menu; Woodland adds cross country

Wednesday, August 9, 2006

The Crusaders' sports program takes another step this fall.

The official start of the 2006-2007 high school sports year began Monday with the opening day of fall practices.

For two area teams, Monday marked the first official practice in program history. Woodland and Saxony Lutheran will each introduce new sports programs this fall.

Adding to a growing sports program will be the Saxony Lutheran boys soccer team, which joins a group -- track and field, cross country and baseball -- that has already won district championships as well as two team state titles.

The soccer team, coached by Ryan Schweain, will play a varsity schedule. Saxony Lutheran currently has about 18 kids out and looks to add more before the season begins.

"We may take some lumps, but we figure we may as well jump in and play [varsity], that way we get some good experience," Saxony Lutheran athletic director Larry Cleair said. "We've got some kids that have played some good league soccer."

Woodland will field a cross country team after scrapping its fall baseball program. Lack of participation was cited in abandoning fall baseball.

Woodland, coached by Ryan Layton, will join a growing list of area small schools which field cross country teams. Other area Class 1 cross country programs include two-time state champion Saxony Lutheran, Advance, Delta, Meadow Heights and Oak Ridge.

Union College inks ND duo

Notre Dame graduates Mollie Messmer and Eden Ellison have signed on to help resurrect the swimming program at NAIA school Union College.

Union, in Barbourville, Ky., restarted its swimming program in 2005 following a five-year absence.

Messmer swam in three relay events at the state meet this past season for Notre Dame, and Ellison made the trip to state as an alternate.

Ellison, also a member of Notre Dame's softball team which finished third and second over the past two seasons, respectively, will also play softball at Union.

New coach for Hornets

Former Oran volleyball coach Amanda Dannenmueller will take over the Advance squad this season.

Dannenmueller takes over for Kimberly Smith, who helped lead the Hornets to a district title in 2002. The Hornets have lost to Bell City in the district finals each of the past three seasons.

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