KCHS, Notre Dame athletes sign with colleges

Seven from Knoxville Catholic High School commit to their futures while three from NDHS do

By Dan McWilliams

Knoxville Catholic High School and Notre Dame High School in Chattanooga each held a National Signing Day Ceremony on Nov. 8.

Seven athletes signed with colleges at KCHS, and three from NDHS committed to their future academic and athletic pursuits.

Sydney Mains and Caroline Krueger of the KCHS defending state-champion basketball girls team were among those signing. Sydney committed to Florida Atlantic University and Caroline to Milligan University.

Addison Moss signed with Brevard College in soccer for Knoxville Catholic, as did Eleni Liakonis with Samford University in tennis, Hudson Lutterman with Virginia Tech University in baseball, Jack Judd with King University in baseball, and Grant Tallent with Johnson University in baseball.

Notre Dame High School students signing with colleges are Maggie Fillauer (left) with Wingate, Caimen Cothron with UT-Chattanooga, and Cole McCormick with Alabama-Huntsville. (Courtesy of Notre Dame High School)

Notre Dame’s Cole McCormick will play basketball for John Shulman at the University of Alabama at Huntsville next season. Coach Shulman previously was at The McCallie School in Chattanooga and was the former head coach at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Cole is a 1,000-point scorer at Notre Dame High School.

Maggie Fillauer of Notre Dame will continue her volleyball career at Wingate University next fall. She is just coming off an outstanding senior season leading the Lady Irish volleyball team to both the district and region championships. Caimen Cothron of NDHS will play beach volleyball at UTC next year. The beach volleyball team at UTC is a relatively new program, and she will be a solid addition to the team.

Sydney and Caroline of KCHS are coached by Sydney’s father, Travis Mains, with mom Missey Mains as an assistant coach. The Lady Irish have made the state tournament in all three of the two seniors’ previous seasons, but last spring they captured the program’s first-ever state title. Sydney was named the most valuable player of the state tourney. Mr. and Mrs. Mains have coached Sydney since fifth grade in travel and school basketball.

Mr. Mains was glad to see signing day arrive.

“It’s a huge day for the Mains family and the Krueger family. These kids have worked an insane amount of hours, sacrificed, and gotten a lot back in return. This is just the cherry on top. I’m just so excited for these kids,” he said.

Sydney has received several accolades in her career.

“She’s worked for all of them, and then she’s had a tremendous amount of support around her, her teachers, her coaches, and her teammates. It’s been a blessing moving to Knoxville,” Mr. Mains said.

Sydney has averaged about 20 points per game and was closing in on 2,000 career points as her senior season began. Sydney and Caroline have led the Lady Irish’s resurgence in recent years.

“They’ve been here together for four years and kind of turned this program around, those two have,” Mr. Mains said.

Sydney said she is “super excited” to sign with Florida Atlantic.

“It’s a relieving feeling for sure. I’m happy that the process is finally coming to a close. I enjoyed it while it happened. I found somewhere that I’m excited to be for the next four years,” she said.

She narrowed down her college choices to the Owls’ program.

“After talking with the coaches, I felt like they truly believed in me and believed that I could help their program evolve. I enjoyed being down there with the team whenever I went, so overall everything about it just felt right,” she said.

Florida Atlantic made headlines last spring when its men’s basketball program made a surprise run to the Final Four.

“Their coach is pretty awesome. I got to meet coach Dusty May when we were down there. He’s very humble and very deserving,” Sydney said.

Jennifer Sullivan will be Sydney’s head coach on the women’s team at FAU.

Knoxville Catholic has a goal of repeating as state champion, Sydney said.

“We’ve got some really good girls. We have 10 girls who can play, so I think we’re going to do better than we did last year. I mean, we won state, but as a team I think we’re going to be better and have high scoring across the board,” she said.

Sydney no longer feels the burden of being the team’s leading scorer.

“Maybe my freshman year, but now I don’t feel that at all because if I have a bad game, there are other people who can pick me up but also take over some of that role,” she said.

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