All four fall sports teams starting August practices

    Fields and courts in Imperial will get very busy next week as all four Longhorn fall sports teams start official practices on Monday.
    In the past, due to earlier game schedules than other fall sports, Longhorn football and softball teams started official practices a week earlier than volleyball and cross country.
    However, the Nebraska School Activities Association (NSAA), which directs high school sports programs in the state, set the start of all fall sports on the same day this year, Monday, Aug. 7.
    All four head coaches of cross country, football, softball and volleyball at Chase county Schools are getting ready for practice next week and have a pretty close count on team numbers.
Cross country
    Cross Country Head Coach Carl Zuege is expecting 14-15 girls and eight boys on his teams this fall, who’ll be starting practice Monday at 7 a.m.
    As coach of one of the teams with a week earlier practice start, Zuege said this is the earliest he can recall for hitting the pavement with his runners.
    The Longhorn runners will compete again this fall in Class C for the second year, after seven to eight years in Class D, he said.
    Their first meet is the Cambridge Invitational on Friday, Sept. 1, at 9:30 a.m. MT
    Zuege said his runners participate in a voluntary running schedule in the summer and most typically clock between 200 and 300 miles during those months.
    Thirty-five football players will be on the gridiron for the Longhorns this fall with their first game just three weeks away.    
    Head Coach Dan Lenners said practice sessions next week will run from 6 to 8:30 a.m. starting Monday.
    He said there has been good participation during the summer months by his players with lifting and conditioning in the mornings.    
    Chase County’s first gridiron opponent will be Cozad on Friday, Aug. 25, when the Longhorns will be on the road. Their first home game will be Sept. 1 against Broken Bow.
    Seventeen girls are expected to be on the softball field for the Lady Longhorns this fall.
    The softball team has the earliest season opener of all the Chase County fall sports when they travel to a triangular at Southern Valley on Tuesday, Aug. 22. That’s the day before CCS classes start.
    Coach Denise Smith said the team is completing a week of conditioning this week which has included swimming, biking, running hills, cardio workouts and lifting.
    Next week, as official practices start, the team will practice Monday through Wednesday from 6 to 10 a.m. with a half hour break, then start at 4 p.m. next Thursday and Friday, Aug. 10-11. During fair week, practice is set for 6 to 8 a.m. Monday through Friday.
    The swimming pool has been the gathering spot for Lady Longhorn volleyball players this week as they work on conditioning in anticipation of the start of practice Monday.
    Coach Jodie Schuller said her team will take part in two-a-days Monday through Wednesday next week from 8 to 10:30 a.m. and 3 to 5:30 p.m., then move to a 4 to 6:30 p.m. schedule Thursday and Friday, Aug. 10-11.
    She anticipates 14 girls on the 2017-18 roster.
    First game on the Lady Longhorn schedule will be at home against Haxtun, Colo., on Thursday, Aug. 31, starting at 4 p.m.
    Schuller said she’s also hoping to schedule a volleyball Jamboree match with an area team before the season opener, but that hadn’t been finalized yet earlier this week.

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