AURORA | Cherokee Trail High School is moving on without the only softball coach its known in its 12-year history.
Athletic director Steve Carpenter confirmed that Dick Hormann has decided to quietly step down after leading the Cougars since their first varsity season in 2003.
Hormann’s overall record at Cherokee Trail stands at 170-86-1 and the Cougars won four league championships — two in the Centennial League and two in the Skyline League — during his watch. The Cougars had their best record (21-3) in 2005, when they made the first of two trips to the Final Four at the 4A state tournament, doing it again in 2007.
Hormann couldn’t be reached for comment, but Carpenter said: “It wasn’t an easy decision for him, I know it was really tough. This has been a big part of his life, but it’s changed too much over the years. It’s not the same as it was when he started here 12 years ago. I think he’s at a point in his life where it wasn’t really what he wanted to do anymore.”
Demanding of his players and a stickler for fundamentals, Hormann had a successful run aided by enrollment numbers that continued to grow at the school and the yearly arrival of new talent, including several players who moved on to play in college.
Perhaps his most successful individual talent was 2005 graduate Heather Hansen, who finished 10-0 with a 1.03 ERA as a pitcher and hit .513 with a 4A-best 46 RBI during Cherokee Trail’s semifinal season of 2005, earning a scholarship to Colorado Mesa University. Hansen later returned to the program as an assistant coach.
After the successful run in 4A, Hormann helped guide Cherokee Trail smoothly as it made the transition up to 5A to becomes part of the Centennial League in 2008. The Cougars immediately won the league title and did again in 2010. Cherokee Trail qualified for the 5A state tournament three times under Hormann — in 2008, 2011 and 2012 — but failed to win a game.
In Hormann’s final season, Cherokee Trail finished 9-11-1 and surged into a three-way tie for second place behind league and eventual 5A state champion Grandview and earning a spot in the district postseason field. The Cougars lost to Columbine and Douglas County in District 8 play to fall short of making the state tournament.
“The most respect in the world for that man, we’re going to try to do something to honor him next year,” Carpenter said. “We might put up a sign at the field dedicating it him. We want to honor him and all the time he’s spent working with the community and our girls.”
Carpenter said the school would begin its coaching search in the new year.
Whoever gets the job inherits a young, but talented softball team. Cherokee Trail had six players — juniors Kourtney Kellogg (catcher) and Sydney Hinton (infield), sophomores Skyler Higens (infield), Chloe Knapp (outfield) and Audrey Pickett (pitcher) and freshman Megan Medhus (utility) — voted to the All-Centennial League second team and none are seniors.
Cherokee Trail has several other jobs to fill as well, according to Carpenter.
The school needs to find a new head boys soccer coach to replace Mazen Kayali, as well as new boys swim coach — to replace Kevin Sullivan, who is moving to Texas — and a new girls lacrosse coach to succeed Janell Myers.
Courtney Oakes is Sports Editor of the Aurora Sentinel. Reach him at 303-75-7555 or [email protected] Twitter: @aurorasports. FB: Aurora Prep Sentinel
DICK HORMANN’S RECORD WITH CHEROKEE TRAIL SOFTBALL
2014: 9-11-1 (tied for 2nd in Centennial League); 2013: 9-10 (4th place in Centennial League); 2012: 16-7 (2nd place in Centennial League); 2011: 13-10 (3rd place in Centennial League); 2010: 14-7 (Centennial League champion); 2009: 12-10 (3rd place in Centennial League); 2008: 13-10 (Centennial League champion); 2007: 18-5 (2nd place in Skyline League; 2006: 19-3 (Skyline League champion); 2005: 21-3 (Skyline League champion); 2004: 11-9 (2nd place in Skyline League); 2003: 16-1 (independent)