CCS Blaze expanding athletic opportunities

As summer winds down, athletics for the Clinton City School Blaze are heating up.

Tryouts for the inaugural cross county team will be held Aug. 15 at the City of Clinton Field. CCS Athletic Director E.T. Stamey said the cross country team will be coached by Teri Kerley and former Anderson County High School runner Amanda May will join the team as an assistant coach.

“We’ve joined the Knoxville Running Club. The season is already prepared and we can enter the meets we want, whether it’s three, five, or seven,” he said. “We’re thrilled about that.”

Their first meet will be held at Victor Ashe Park in Knoxville and later in the season, they will also have a meet at Norris Dam State Park.

Stamey said they hope to have 20 members on the team this season.

Another new addition to the athletic program starts when The Blaze swimming team opens practice on Aug. 14. The team will have its first regular season meet later in September.

Basketball tryouts are also already on the calendar. Tryouts for The Blaze boys will be Aug. 20 and Aug. 22, immediately after school.

Tryouts for the girls will be Aug. 21 and Aug. 23, also immediately after school.

The teams will be selected and announced Aug. 24.

The girls will have a new assistant coach, former Anderson County Lady Mav ???? Kite.

“This year we will have 30 kids playing basketball, 20 running cross country, and 19 swimming. That’s 69 kids added to the athletics program,” Stamey said.

A great deal of work has been completed and continues in the Clinton Elementary Gym, the home of The Blaze. Over the summer, the gym got a brand new floor and bleachers. Wall pads to go behind the goals have been ordered and two new scoreboards will be added soon.

The cost of the gym renovation project was $55,000 and will be finished by the start of basketball season.

Another new wrinkle for Blaze basketball this season is the addition of a pep band and a dance team.

Stamey said CCS will look at hosting a soccer camp and a volleyball camp as well later this year to gauge interests in those sports as well.