By Rob Kiser
It wasn’t easy.
But, Piqua High School Athletic Director Chip Hare has filled all the openings for varsity coaching positions this fall — and did it quality people in every case.
The only two teams who will have the same varsity coach are football, with Bill Nees; and girls golf, with Cathy Barhorst.
“When you are hiring someone, you always hope they are going to be successful,” Hare said. “The one thing I feel like with all these coaches is they will help all of our athletes to continue to represent Piqua in a way that will make the school and community proud.”
In cross country, Ryan King and Kyle Bowman from the store Can’t Stop Running who are both heavily involved in running, will take over the cross country programs, although Courtney Swabb will continue to play an integral role.
“Our cross country programs are in good shape,” Hare said. “And a big reason for that is the job Courtney Swabb has done. Because of that, we feel like Ryan (King) and Kyle (Bowman) know running and are in position to continue to build on that and have success.”
Andy Johnson, already on staff, will take over the boys golf program.
Johnson was a standout golfer at Covington and has had success as an assistant coach, both with Piqua girls basketball and Covington baseball.
“Not only is Andy a very good golfer who knows the game, he is a guy who is going to help our golfers to be more competitive and finish higher in the GWOC,” Hare said. “He has a great connection with kids, that is going to be beneficial to the program.”
Flo Loisy will be moving from the girls soccer program to take over as boys varsity coach.
“Flo (Loisy) is an assistant coach for the Dayton Dutch Lions professional team and is also coach of a very successful club team so I am sure he is ready to make the move,” Hare said.
Loisy was also very successful as the girls coach and now Brett Ritter will take over that program.
“He is another guy who has been very successful as a club coach,” Hare said about Ritter. “He was most recently a varsity assistant for a very successful program at Fairmont and has been the JV soccer coach there (Fairmont) in the past.”
Liana Michael takes over as varsity volleyball coach after several years as an assistant.
Many may remember her as Liana Webster from her playing days at Piqua.
She will look to continue the success of the past several seasons under Kaila Cook.
The Lady Indians have gone 12-10 and 13-11 the last two seasons, winning the Piqua Invitational last year.
“She is a former player and has been the JV coach,” Hare said. “I feel like she is a great hire. She will push the kids to continue and build on the success we have had the last couple years. She has a great relationship with the kids and that (working with the kids) is something she is very good at.”
And Hare feels like his whole staff has a great opportunity for success.
“Our goal for our athletes is to have a good experience and compete at the highest level,” Hare said. “Also, to represent the school and the community in a way that will make them proud.”
And he now feels like the staff is in place to make that happen.
Rob Kiser is Sports Editor for the Daily Call. He can be reached at (937) 451-3334.