Tusculum cancels soccer season

September 1, 2006

GREENEVILLE, Tenn. -- Tusculum College canceled the rest of its men's soccer season after several team members were accused of stealing cash from a fundraiser at Bristol Motor Speedway last weekend.

The team was selling concessions at the weekend's NASCAR races to raise funds for the program and were accused of taking an undisclosed amount of money and food.

No criminal charges were filed after the money was returned, athletic officials said in a statement Friday. The student-athletes are not being expelled by athletic officials, but they may be subject to further punishment by the dean of students.

"While there are innocent people on our men's soccer team who will be affected, this incident has brought great embarrassment to our entire (athletic) program," athletic director Ed Hoffmeyer said in the statement.

Both head coach Tony Castainca, in his 17th season at the school, and assistant coach Louis Thorpe, in his third season, have resigned.

Athletic officials plan to reinstate the program next season and search for new coaches.

The Presbyterian-affiliated NCAA Division II school is located in Greeneville, about 65 miles northeast of Knoxville.


Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press