Tennis
An Aug. 25 quadrangular at Topeka Hayden started the Fall sports season for Gardner-Edgerton High School. The team returned home Aug. 29 to host its Annual Blazer quadrangular.
New head coach Jackie O’Connor-Stahl is working with a very talented squad and has witnessed a good work ethic in pre-season drills.
The team travels to the Spring Hill quadrangular Sept. 6.
Football
Head coach Marvin Diener has been busy preparing his squad for a Sept. 4 non-league game at East St. Louis.
The defending EKL champs return six starters on both offense and defense. The defense will be much improved led by senior linebackers Brent Bovitz and Marcus Williams and junior Matt Plank.
Offensively, sophomore Jared Hobby takes over at quarterback and will be joined by talented sophomore running back Traevohn Wrench.
After a Sept. 9 game at Blue Valley North, GEHS finally comes home to play Bishop Miege.
Cross Country
Head coach Larry Ward enters his 33rd year with a young, but talented squad.
“Both squads remain young with limited depth in the senior class,” said Ward. “The boys squad missed qualifying for state by one place but returns the entire team. Our girls placed fifth in 5A state and return four of their seven top runners.”
On the girls side, GEHS lost two-time all-stater Dana Goodwin. She moved out of state.
In her absence, the Lady Blazers return sophomore Aly Daniels (state medalist) and state participants junior McKenzie Scroggin, sophomore Katie Groshong, junior Anna Gardiner, and senior Christine Moore.
Also returning are letterwinners Molly Porter (12), Jade Visos-Ely (10), and Emily Betthauser (12).
Rounding out the squad are Kari Porter (10), Rebecca Clark-Hargreaves (12), and Abby Kedebe (12).
For the boys, state participants Arron Scott (11), and Dewey Molenda (11) lead the way.
Returning letterwinners are Chris Kreiser (11), Keith Heniss (12), Omar Quintana (10), and Justin Wilde (11).
Rounding out the squad are Nathan David (10), Max Moore (12), Pat Kern (10), Ryder Patterson (10), Michael Jolly (12), and Loie Njpakin (12).
Soccer
Head coach Andy Weber enters his third year hoping to improve on last year’s 4-13-1 record.
“Our goals are to assert ourselves in the EKL as we compete versus some of the most successful programs in the state,” said Weber.
Top returnees include sophomore Luke Fisher (second team EKL). He will move from defense to mid-fielder. Fisher was “Newcomer of the Year” last season.
Andrew Dittemore, also a sophomore, will return as goalkeeper and Dilon Dodson (2nd team EKL) enters his junior season. He was leading scorer and offensive MVP last season.
First test comes at 7 p.m. on Sept. 1 at Shawnee Mission North.
Volleyball
Head coach Darrel Wait has been busy preparing his squad for a Sept. 1 home triangular.
Top returnees include junior setter Hannah Bettge and junior outside hitter Cassie Wait. Other key players are sophomore outside hitter Jill Starling and junior middle blocker Dani Plank.
“Last season we completed one of our most successful seasons in school history,” said Wait, whose team finished 32-7 and second in the EKL. “We are really looking to improve even more.”
Golf
Head coach Amy Van Rheen is working with a young, talented team in preparation for the EKL opener Aug. 31.
Van Rheen will look to senior Kelsey Schaefer to provide leadership. A four-year starter, Schaefer’s experience will be key to the young team.
Also returning is sophomore Jacque Buckingham. She looks to be a scoring leader on the team.
Freshmen newcomers are Jasmine Bailey and Hannah Desmarteau. They will share time between varsity and junior varsity.