Fortney steps down, Settle and Bratcher set to take over DC cross country and track

December 13, 2021 | 12:05 am

Updated December 13, 2021 | 10:41 am

With Mark Fortney stepping down to an assistant coaching role, Sydney Settle and Josh Bratcher are set to assume the head coaching responsibilities for girls and boys cross country and track at Daviess County.

Settle is a familiar face to Daviess County cross country, having served as an assistant coach for the past three years after coaching for a year at Owensboro Catholic.

After being under Fortney’s tutelage for years, Settle is excited to take on the responsibility of following in his footsteps.

“I’m very excited to take on this new role,” Settle said. “It’s really a dream come true, and I’m so grateful to have the opportunity.”

Having been a part of the Daviess County cross country program in her running days as well as a coach, Settle is looking forward to maintaining the rich tradition the program has.

“I’ve had the privilege of being a part of the DCXC program as a runner and as a coach,” Settle said. “The memories and friendship this program has brought me are truly lifelong, and I hope to give back half as much as it’s given me. The tradition on this team runs deep and I hope to build on that.”

Settle knows that the close-knit feel that the program has is something that really drives the success Daviess County has and hopes to continue to push it forward in the future.

“The culture of the DCXC program is what makes it so special and unique,” Settle said. “It really is a family, and the love, encouragement, and support overflows. All of our kids buy into the program and work hard day in and day out. Their drive, commitment, and love of running is contagious and has led to our success. I hope to keep that going for years to come.”

Bratcher is no stranger to the Panthers program as well, recently serving this past year as an assistant coach under Fortney.

The new boys cross country head coach has been around running since he was five years old and continued to be around it while his dad Willie Bratcher served as a coach for Apollo High School, Burns Middle School, Daviess County Middle School and Kentucky Wesleyan.

Sitting under such a successful coach as Fortney, Bratcher said it is bittersweet to see him step down, but is excited to work with such a strong program that the Panthers have.

“I am most looking forward to having the opportunity to continue working with an outstanding group of young men,” Bratcher said. “I know they will continue to work hard and maintain a tradition of excellence.”

Looking forward to the seasons ahead, Bratcher said he is thankful for the opportunity to coach the young men of Daviess County cross country.

“My primary objective for the team is to help shape these young men into hard working successful student athletes and gentlemen, who also grow to become great runners,” Bratcher said. 

December 13, 2021 | 12:05 am

Share this Article

Other articles you may like