Dr. Sandy Zensen has retired as athletic director at Bryan College after 23 years, most of which he spent also as the men's soccer coach. A former pastor, he will continue to serve the Dayton school in a half-time teaching position in the Division of Christian Studies and Philosophy, while baseball coach Taylor Hasty is taking over the AD position. "Dr. Zensen has served well our college and student athletes, ... developing the soccer program into a perennial conference and NAIA regional powerhouse," president Dr. Stephen Livesay said in a school release. "In spite of his numerous coaching awards and dozens of championships in the NAIA and the NCCAA, he would tell you the most important aspect of his coaching has been the spiritual guidance he has given the players on his teams as well as the mentoring of all the coaches in the athletic department." Said Zensen: "It's been a great run, to say the least. I've had the privilege of doing what I love for nearly 24 years -- coaching, teaching, discipling, even the administrative side of things. However, what I appreciated the most were those who I rubbed shoulders with on a daily basis." The Appalachian Athletic Conference Champions of Character for men's soccer is named for Zensen. "It has been an honor and a privilege to coach under Coach Zensen's leadership the past eight years. He has been a wonderful mentor and friend," said Hasty, a former Bryan baseball player who has been the head coach since 2009 and began working for the college in 2006. "It is humbling to follow in Coach Z's footsteps as the director of athletics." Zensen said of Hasty, "I fully expect him to take the department and move it well beyond what I was able to do in my tenure. He is quality through and through, top to bottom."
• Covenant College's tribute tonight to David Taaffe, who would have been a junior on the soccer team but died from injuries in a hiking fall in Switzerland in July, will include giving out 200 T-shirts with his name and number on the back and 500 blue wristbands with the inscription "#6 David Taaffe -- Be Thou My Vision." There will be a short ceremony starting about 10 minutes before the 8 p.m. home match with Sewanee.
• Covenant goalkeeper Shuler Polk was the USA South men's soccer defensive player of the week for his shutout against Tennessee Temple last Friday night, and Covenant's Estes Carlson was the USA South volleyball defensive player of the week after her 31 digs in two wins Saturday.
• Justin Tipton of Chattanooga won the $1,500 top prize in the Super Pro class Saturday night at the Brainerd Optimist Drag Strip. Tipton, a first-year racer, won with a 5.01-second run on a 5.01 dial in a Worthy dragster with a modified 547 cubic-inch Chevrolet engine prepared by George Gossett. Ringgold's Johnny Lewis was second in a race decided by inches. Strip hall of famer L.C. Bigham won the Foot Brake class with an 8.36 run on an 8.35 dial in his 1972 Dodge Dart. Melvin Croft was second in a 1969 Dodge. Ryan Dennis of Cleveland won the Junior Dragster class with Dunlap's Mattie Keener second.
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