060817 Sports: Veteran coach will lead WHS ‘AD team’
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Sports: Veteran coach will lead WHS ‘AD team’

By Charles Swenson
Coastal Observer

A 20-year veteran of the sidelines at Warrior Field is the new Waccamaw High School athletic director. Ben Schoen will be the first among equals on a team with two other coaches, principal David Hammel said.

Schoen is the boys varsity soccer coach. He celebrated his 300th win this season. He will be joined by Jeff Gregory, the varsity baseball coach, and Dan Minkin, an assistant boys lacrosse coach. Gregory was assistant athletic director to Joan Cribb, who stepped down this year after 16 years as AD. “It’s an administrative team,” Hammel said. “He wanted Dan and Jeff to help him.”

Schoen was on vacation with his family this week and could not be reached for comment. He will be back on campus next week with Minkin and Gregory top-dressing the playing fields. “It’s turned into a 24/7, 365 type of job,” Hammel said. Schoen teaches English, including an AP class. Minkin teaches social studies. Gregory teaches physical education.

“They all had their talents and expertise,” Hammel said. It was Schoen who pitched the idea in his interview with Hammel and committee of staff and booster club members. They will share the stipend provided to the AD and one assistant.

Schoen will provide oversight. Minkin, a former assistant AD at Boiling Springs, will handle paperwork. Gregory will oversee facilities.

As a veteran coach, Schoen had ideas to improve the athletics program and knew what features need to stay, Hammel said. Changes include an online database for recordkeeping, revised player and coach handbooks, a community mentoring program and facility upgrades. They also want coaches to be more visible at other teams’ games.

Schoen will continue coaching soccer, but one of the athletic team’s first jobs will be finding an assistant varsity volleyball coach. Schoen will give up that job, assisting his wife Jill, to devote the fall season to his new AD duties.

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