Change.

It might be the motto of the New Haven athletic department this season. For the first time in 35 years, the program has a new athletic director.

Jaime Hoener takes over for the legendary Ray Steinhoff. Steinhoff had been at New Haven High School as coach or athletic director every year since 1980.

“Taking over for Ray, wow, what huge shoes I have to fill!” Hoener said. “We were very lucky to have him as long as we did and I will try my best to do as good of a job as he did.”

Hoener, who will remain as the volleyball head coach, is a New Haven graduate and she said Steinhoff has done everything possible to make for a smooth transition.

“He has been extremely helpful and patient with me in this transition, which is not a surprise to anyone who knows him,” Hoener said. “I know he still cares very much about this school and wants us to be successful.”

Hoener said others around the area have offered support as well.

“Many athletic directors and officials have reached out to me, welcoming me and giving nothing but the highest praise for Ray,” Hoener said. “I’m looking forward to the challenge and will do my best to take care of our athletes and coaches.”

New Haven again will offer three varsity programs during the fall in volleyball, cross country and softball.

Prospective athletes need to have a completed physical on file before being allowed to practice. With a new MSHSAA rule, physicals are good for two years from the date they were completed.

For additional questions, please contact Hoener at jhoener@newhavenschools.us.

John Tucker returns to lead the cross country program, but the softball team has a new leader as well. Doug Peirick, who was the assistant to Tim Scheer last year, steps up to the head coaching position this fall.

Practices for the varsity teams start Monday, Aug. 12.

Information follows:

• Volleyball — Hoener said tryouts will start Monday, Aug. 12, from 3:15-5:45 p.m.

Should the heat index be over 95 degrees, tryouts will be moved back to 7 p.m.

• Cross Country — The coed program will hold its first practice Monday, Aug. 12, at 3 p.m. Practice will start at the City Park upper pavilion.

Should the heat index be above 95 degrees, the practice will start at 7 p.m.

• Softball — Practice will be held at Lions Field and prospects are asked to bring water. The first practice is planned from 3-5 p.m. but if the heat index is above 95 degrees, it will be pushed back to 7 p.m.

Middle School Sports

Additionally, the school offers two middle school programs in cross country and girls basketball.

The cross country team will be led by Jared Pruessner and will start practice Monday, Aug. 19, at 3 p.m.

There will be a meeting for prospective runners when school begins.

The middle school girls basketball team is being coached by Austin Peirick and will start with an open gym at the elementary school Aug. 16 from 3-4:30 p.m.

Practices will be held at the elementary school starting Aug. 19 from 3-5 p.m.