B Varsity

Tuesday, Apr 09 2013 10:27 PM

Change is afoot at Stockdale — lots of it

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BY ZACH EWING Californian staff writer zewing@bakersfield.com

UPDATE: A couple of people have noted that I wasn't very specific below, and I want to correct that. As far as I know, all of these coaches and athletic director Mark Hance are leaving of their own will — that's for sure the case with Hance, Hager, Lemon and Keene, who will be the new AD. I didn't want to give the impression that they were being asked to leave. In reality, it's natural for a school of Stockdale's age to have some coaches who have been there a long time reach retirement age, and that's the case with most of these, even if (as in Hager's and Lemon's cases) they still have another year or two of teaching before official retirement.

ORIGINAL POST: We've known for a couple of months now that Stockdale, which is concluding its 22nd school year, is undergoing some hefty changes at the end of the school year, with both athletic director Mark Hance and girls basketball coach Glenn Hager, who has more wins in that sport than any other coach in Central Section history, were stepping down.

But the change apparently is more widespread than I thought. What follows is a list of coaches (and the athletic director) that will need to be replaced. The new athletic director, expected to be current boys golf coach Jim Keene, will have his hands full.

Athletic director Mark Hance
Boys soccer coach David Atkinson
Boys basketball coach Oliver Brown
Girls basketball coach Glenn Hager (and co-coach Charles Stewart)
Baseball coach Dan Lemon
Boys golf coach Jim Keene (moving to AD)

All of these coaches have been at Stockdale for at least 10 years and won at least one section championship except Brown, who just finished his fourth season.

Longtime coaches Maria Collatz (volleyball), Janien McGowan (girls soccer) and Dave Lonsinger (track and field) remain, but when Stockdale begins school year No. 23 in the fall, the athletics program will have a distinctly different look.

As for replacements, Keene told me today he knows he'll be busy. I'll take a stab at some possible hires — but this is complete conjecture.

• I don't think it would surprise anyone if Dave Purdy, who had successful tenures at Highland and Ridgeview, applied for the boys basketball job. His son, Robbie, contributed to the team as a sophomore this season, and when Purdy stepped down from Ridgeview last year citing family reasons, he was explicit in saying he'd like to return to coaching one day.

• In baseball, one of the Showers brothers — Greg, Lemon's longtime varsity assistant, or Brad, the longtime JV coach — would get heavy consideration if they applied.

• I've also heard Lemon, who still has a couple of more years of teaching to go before retirement, might slide into Keene's role as boys golf coach. But again, at this point that's just a rumor.

• The biggest shoes to fill will be Hager's on the girls basketball bench, especially considering the Mustangs, who have advanced to seven of the past eight Central Section Division I championship games, were senior-heavy this season. Who will take on the job? No idea on this one.

• Keep in mind, though, that Stockdale is a school that routinely produces good students and good athletes. These openings will all produce good candidates, and the new coaches should be in a good position to succeed. But things are going to feel different at White Lane and Buena Vista, that's for sure.

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