The hiring of a new athletic director goes hand-in-hand with the growing athletic department of Indiana Tech, which recently added men's and women's lacrosse for the 2009-10 season.
Jeff Walker was announced as the new athletic director on Thursday and women's lacrosse coach Ed Karasek was on hand.
“We've got a wonderful program coming,” Karasek said.
Walker's history of fostering growth of athletic programs fits with the lacrosse programs at Indiana Tech.
The Warriors will begin play this fall with an alumni game, then travel to Chicago for a tournament in which they'll play club programs from Indiana, Purdue, DePaul, Michigan and Michigan State.
An October tournament at Trine University in Angola will end the fall season. They'll play 18 more games beginning in the spring semester.
Seven of the 22 players on Karasek's roster are under full scholarship. All are incoming freshmen who played on varsity or club teams, including Homestead's Clea Endres, who is the only local player on the team.
“The women's game is a very colorful game,” said Karasek, who played lacrosse at Bowling Green under legendary coach Mickey Cochrane.
“There's very little equipment, just a pair of goggles. It's a game of finesse and speed. The men wear helmets, shoulder pads, arm pads and very heavy gloves. It is a very physical and rough game.”
Karasek said the university is already examining ways to introduce the sport into more local schools, including a women's lacrosse clinic in the fall for middle schoolers.
“Right now, Indiana is a little bit behind in women's lacrosse,” he said. “There are only 18 high school teams because most are on a club program.”
Former Bishop Luers (2002) and Ball State (2007) lacrosse standout Terry Nichter will head the Warriors' men's program. He has coached the Ball State team since 2006. He was not present at the announcement of Walker's hiring.
Both coaches began their duties July 1.