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The Foothill Dragon Press

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The Foothill Dragon Press

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Breaking: First four coaches hired for Foothill athletics program (UPDATED)

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Updated: 11:48 EST 

The first four athletic coaches in Foothill’s history have been hired to coach cross country, swimming, girls golf, and boys and girls tennis. Each will coach part-time and receive a stipend from the Ventura Unified School District based on years of experience and how many teams they will oversee. Foothill will field 20 new teams in 2014-2015.

 

Cross Country

Ken Reeves will lead the boys and girls cross country teams. Principal Joe Bova, who is overseeing the hiring process along with Foothill athletic director Emily Stevens,  considers Reeves to be the “most well-respected running coach in Southern California.”

“Coach Reeves has held me accountable and taught me to take care of my team. He has helped me grow as a leader,” said Foothill junior Evan Askar, captain of the Ventura boys cross country team. “He has taught our team to come together and become a family rather than a group of individuals.” 

During his time instructing cross country at Nordhoff High School, Reeves led his team to victory in 11 state championships and 14 CIF championships. He coached for five seasons at the college level, including at the University of California at Santa Barbara and the University of Washington.

Reeves was inducted into the Ventura County Sports Hall of Fame in 2002, and was named the National High School Coach of the Year in 1999 and 2000. Retired from teaching, he has been helping to coach runners at Ventura High School in recent years.

“Coach Reeves is ranked among the best coaches in the nation, and he chooses to spend his free time with unappreciative high school students,” said Foothill senior Daniel Eckstrom, who runs for Ventura High School boys cross country, in a text to the Dragon Press this morning.  “It’s not uncommon for him to be working past midnight analyzing a race and each of our competitors just to give Ventura a better chance next time around. He brings not only his unparalleled experience to the team, but also inspires all of us with his work ethic.”

“He is the most successful coach in state history in terms of championships,” Bova said. “He’s also an excellent P.E. teacher for many years, a physical education teacher and just a great, aside from his coaching abilities, [he has] a huge wealth of knowledge and support for starting athletics in general.”

 

Swimming

Jason York will coach the boys and girls swimming teams. York is the director and senior level coach of the Buenaventura Swim Club, where he has worked since 2007.

“He’s definitely one of the most knowledgeable people in the region in terms of swimming,” Bova said. “He’s had a really successful run [at the Buenaventura Swim Club], increasing numbers in participation and taking swimmers to the next level.”

In addition to his personal swimming accomplishments as senior national qualifier and Olympic trials qualifier, York was named Pacific Swimming Western Zone All-Star Coach in 2006 and 2007. He previously worked as a coach at Santa Clara Swim Club.

“Jason York is a great coach and really knows what he is doing and can coach swimmers to their highest potential,” Foothill alumni Natalie Waechter (’13) said.

 

Girls Golf

Janey Dunn has accepted the position of girls golf coach. The University of Alabama graduate played collegiate golf for four years and served as an assistant to the Women’s Golf Team, helping the head coach with practices, tournaments and workouts.

Dunn works for the county as a forensic scientist in the ballistics lab at the sheriff’s department.

“We’re impressed that she’s also a working professional in the community,” Bova said.

 

Tennis

Brad McClain, a professional tennis instructor for over 20 years, will serve as the school’s boys and girls tennis coach. He has trained athletes at both Ventura College and Ventura High School.

McClain “has coaching experience at every level, but also at the high school level so that’s what set him apart,” Bova said. “He was a very successful tennis player himself.”

At Ventura College, he coached his players to three state championships. McClain has a son playing tennis at Boise State, where he is ranked in the top 10 nationally. McClain teaches tennis at the Pierpont Racquet Club in Ventura.

“I’m looking forward to seeing Foothill’s tennis team in the team 2014, and I’m glad that Brad McClain can bring the first tennis team to Foothill’s sports program,” said Foothill junior Sasha Poirier, who plays tennis for Ventura High School, in a Facebook message to the Dragon Press this morning. “Welcome Brad!”

 

Additional coaches to be hired in coming weeks

Additional coaches will be hired for:  volleyball, water polo, basketball, soccer, baseball, track and field, boys tennis, softball, and boys golf.

Foothill and Ventura Unified administrators have been building a sports program since last April when trustees voted to approve the implementation of athletics at Foothill beginning in 2014-2015.

Foothill’s enrollment grew from 280 students when it was founded in 2000 to about 1,000 students by the fall of 2012. Officials in the Channel League Athletic Conference believed that the school had a large enough enrollment to maintain its own athletic program and requested the school district cease the multi-site agreement.

Foothill’s new athletics program will offer choices for current students, from playing for their current teams at Buena and Ventura to switching to Foothill teams next year. All freshmen next year will play only for Foothill. By 2017-2018, the transition will be complete and Foothill students will no longer be playing for Ventura or Buena high schools.

 

 Graphic Credit: Aysen Tan/The Foothill Dragon Press

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  • F

    FTHS AlumniNov 15, 2013 at 12:28 pm

    Coach Reeves, will take Foothill Technology’s cross country team farther than any other team in Ventura County! Get ready to make it to State!

     
    Reply
  • T

    The Wise Foothill AlumniNov 14, 2013 at 10:53 pm

    You got Ken Reeves for your Cross Country coach?! Dang, your team will do exceedingly well with him guiding the way.

     
    Reply
  • C

    Chuck cheseNov 14, 2013 at 10:28 pm

    Jason is teaching swimming, so awesome.

     
    Reply
  • F

    Foothill AlumniNov 14, 2013 at 10:18 pm

    I am so incredibly jealous that Jason is the swim coach! So cool! Foothill’s swim team is going to become the best in the county.

     
    Reply