By Tamas Mondovics
The resignation of Bloomingdale Senior High School football Head Coach Jason Stokes last year, who, after just one season with the Bulls, decided to move on, shocked some and disappointed others. But, it opened the way for a list of coaches to fill the vacancy.Stokes’ departure was not the only vacancy Bloomingdale Athletic Director Danielle Shotwell, who started at Bloomingdale in 2004, had to take care for before the start of the 2009-2010 season. In fact, to start the year, Shotwell had to fill eight coaching positions.“Every year starts with needing to fill some spots, but this is the most we had to hire at one time, at least since I have been here,” she said. Besides the varsity football coaching position vacancy, which found Coach John Booth to be acceptable, departments like cheerleading and volleyball also needed some big shoes to fill.Long-time and well-known coaches Tracy DiPrima, who led her cheerleading squad to win its second straight state championship title last year, and Bonnie Hess, with more than 30 years of volleyball coaching experience (12 years at Bloomingdale), were among the ones whose posts required a replacements.Candice Teague will now coach the bulls cheerleading squad, while volleyball will be led by Danielle Leffler. Others include, Nancy Harris (girls golf), Joe Willis (boys Basketball), Troy Smith (boys soccer), Eric West (girls football) and James Booth, brother of John (boys track). Booth, Teague, Leffler and Willis will also teach in the classroom.Shotwell is pleased with the new coaches performances so far, some of whose true talents are currently being tested out on the field or in the gym, while others will have to wait for some time later in the season.“All of our coaches are doing a fine job already,” Shotwell said, adding, “I always look for candidates who will be able to a good job both in and out of the classroom.”As far as the athletes are concerned, Shotwell said that she was confident of the students eagerness to welcome their new coaches.“Our students have received the new coaches well and are looking forward to working hard during the new year,” she said.For more information about Bloomingdale Senior High School, please visit www.sdhc.k12.fl.us.
By Tamas Mondovics
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