ETSU hires Layne as track, cross country assistant

Joe Avento • Sep 7, 2016 at 5:43 PM

First she ran for East Tennessee State University. Then she was inducted into the school's Hall of Fame.

Now, Catherine Layne has been hired by ETSU.

Layne, who earned All-America honors with the Bucs under the name Catherine Berry, has been hired to assist runners on the women's cross country and track teams.

"Catherine brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the staff, having been an excellent runner during her career as a Buc and going on to a fine professional career after college," George Watts, ETSU's director of track and field, said.

Layne was the 1997 Southern Conference cross country runner of the year. She also won SoCon track titles in 1998 and 2000 and still holds the ETSU record at 5,000 meters (16:00.97). She also made six trips to the NCAA Championships, three in cross country and three in track.

Layne was an All-American in the 5,000 in 2000 and was inducted into ETSU's Hall of Fame last year.

"I appreciate her dedication and loyalty to her alma mater as she mentors our current and future distance runners," Watts said.

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All the talk about Tennessee and Virginia Tech meeting at Bristol Motor Speedway this weekend has Teddy Gaines reminiscing about his playing days.

Gaines, ETSU's safeties coach, was a starting cornerback at Tennessee and was a member of the 1998 national championship team.

"That was some of the best moments of my life at the University of Tennessee," Gaines said after a recent practice. "They've been talking about that game for a little while. I'm just glad that it's finally here.

"It should be good for the Tri-Cities, good for the state of Tennessee and even good for the state of Virginia."

Of course, Gaines' mind is really on the second game BMS will host. ETSU, coming off a double-overtime victory over Kennesaw State, will take on Western Carolina at the track on Sept 17.

"That's what I'm really looking forward to," Gaines said. "We come in there right after the University of Tennessee. We come in with some momentum and with some confidence.

"It'll be a good experience for these guys playing at Bristol Motor Speedway in our first Southern Conference ballgame. It won't be easy. Western Carolina will be a stiff task, but our boys will be ready to compete.

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The women's volleyball team is off to a perfect start, having won all six of its matches. The Bucs have dropped just one set along the way.

The perfect record will be put to the test this weekend when the Bucs play in the Clemson Classic in South Carolina.

First, they take on host school Clemson on Friday at 1:30 p.m. and North Dakota at 4:30 p.m. They conclude the weekend with a match against Tulane on Saturday at 7 p.m.

Two weeks into the season, ETSU has had two Southern Conference players of the week. Kaela Massey (defensive) and Rylee Milhorn (offensive) have won the weekly awards.

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Tennis coach Yaser Zaatini scored a recruiting coup of sorts when he signed Miguel Este, the top-ranked player in Venezuela.

Este has played on the Venezuelan Davis Cup team and has been as high as 140th in the International Tennis Federation rankings. He's on the roster for the coming season.

"We are extremely proud of our latest addition,” Zaatini said. "Miguel is a wonderful young man who brings talent and heart. He's a big-time signing for us."

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The men's golf team begins it season Saturday at the Rod Myers Invitational at Durham, North Carolina. The tournament is being played at the Duke University Golf Course, where the Bucs previously played in the NCAA Championship.

ETSU will have to try to replace two seniors, including All-American Adrian Meronk.

— — —

The women's golf team opens on Monday at the red Raider Classic in Lubbock, Texas.

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