Chattanooga Lady Red Wolves Name Tennessee Wesleyan Assistant Billy Sparks New Head Coach
(press release) CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (Dec. 4, 2018) – Today, Chattanooga Lady Red Wolves SC announced Billy Sparks as head coach of its WPSL team. Sparks currently serves as assistant coach to Tennessee Wesleyan University’s (TWU) Men’s Soccer Program, first joining the coaching staff of his Alma Mater in August 2018.
“We are thrilled to have Billy join us for the 2019 season,” said team owner Gretchen Hammel. “His experiences as both a player and a coach coupled with his passion for the game make him the perfect fit for our team and the Chattanooga Red Wolves SC organization. This season will be an exciting one to watch.”
The Leicester, England native graduated from TWU in 2013 with degrees in Exercise Science and Sports Management, after a successful collegiate soccer career. During his time as a player for the Bulldogs, Sparks was team captain for two years, selected All-Conference three times, considered one of the top 10 NAIA defenders in 2011 and helped the Bulldogs bring home an Appalachian Athletic Conference (AAC) regular season title in 2010 and the AAC tournament championship in 2012.
Following his graduation in 2013, Sparks pursued a Master’s Degree in Business Administration at St. Andrews University in North Carolina where he was a graduate assistant for the men’s soccer team. Under Sparks’ leadership in 2014, the team achieved the best season in school history when the Knights went 17-2-1 and won the AAC regular season and tournament championships. The Knights made an appearance in the Sweet 16 of the NAIA national tournament that season, as well.
Sparks’ return to TWU in 2018 came after serving as a graduate assistant for the prolific William Carey University Men’s Soccer Team during the 2016 and 2017 seasons. The team reached the Elite Eight of the NAIA national tournament both seasons with an overall 34-5-3 record, as well as two SSAC regular season titles and one SSAC tournament title.
“First, I would like to thank Gretchen Hammel and the Red Wolves staff for giving me this opportunity. Soccer is my passion, and I am thrilled to be able to take on this new venture and continue my development as a young coach,” said Sparks. “I am already excited to get to work with the Chattanooga Lady Red Wolves to help bring success on the field, as well as enhancing the positive image of soccer throughout the Chattanooga community. I will be working tirelessly to achieve these goals and to ensure this exciting new club maintains its already positive and growing reputation.”
Sparks currently holds his USSF National D License, NSCAA National Diploma, NSCAA Advanced National Diploma, NSCAA GK Level One and Two and FA First for Sport Level Coaching Award. Sparks has worked at various youth academies across Tennessee and Mississippi; McMinn United, Chattanooga Football Club, Knoxville Soccer Academy and Hattiesburg Youth FC, as well as private soccer coaching with Excel Soccer Training here in Chattanooga.
The Lady Red Wolves will begin play in May 2019.