Bruce Smith, recently retired Whitmer boys basketball coach, lives a mile away from Southview High School.
The drive to work will be significantly shorter when he is officially named the Cougars’ coach in the near future.
"I'm very grateful to the Southview administration for giving me the opportunity," said Smith, who is expected to receive approval June 10 from the Sylvania school board.
"We're very excited about being able to bring in coach Smith," Southview first-year athletic director Susan Felver said. "He brings in so much experience and success with him to Southview. We felt he was the best choice to bring the program back on the map."
Smith, 56, has spent 35 years as a high school coach and educator. He spent the last 22 years at Whitmer coaching and as a math teacher. He also spent nine years at Napoleon and four at Delta.
In 22 seasons at Whitmer (1991-2013) his record was 306-165, while in four seasons at Delta (1987-1991) he was 53-37 for a career mark of 359-202.
He led Whitmer to the Division I state tournament twice, finishing as a state runner-up in 2012 and as a state semifinalist in 2008. He's retiring as an employee of Washington Local Schools at the end of this school year.
However, Smith decided he still wanted to coach basketball and expressed interest in Southview after coach Marc Jump stepped down from the post.
"Basketball coaching is a passion of mine and that's pretty obvious," Smith said. "I love it. It's a great profession."
Smith's daughter, Nikki, played at rival Northview.
"I'll certainly support Northview basketball every night of the year except two," he said.
Schorsch back to state
Perrysburg senior Jeffrey Schorsch will participate in the state tennis tournament for a fourth straight year when Division I singles competition begins tomorrow at Ohio State University.
The four-time Northern Lakes League champion will have his final shot at winning a state championship. He reached the semifinals last year.
"I think he has a really good chance to win," Perrysburg coach Mark Weider said. "Of the top five state tournament qualifiers, he's played three of them and beat them."
Schorsch faces Cincinnati Sycamore's Alex Taylor in an opening-round matchup. The Valparaiso University-bound player is 27-1. His lone loss occurred after an ankle injury kept him from continuing in the sectional final against Central Catholic junior Dugan Delp.
At the district, he rolled to the title, including a 6-1, 6-1 victory over Delp.
"He's playing really good tennis," Weider said. "He's really confident in his game and he's playing really well."
Delp, the Three Rivers Athletic Conference singles champion, will also compete in D-I singles, facing Mason's Luke Tsai in the first round.
Brothers Ryan and Kevin Brown of St. John’s Jesuit won a district doubles title and will meet Dublin Jerome's Adam Seitz and Kent Seitz in the first round.
Kevin, a sophomore, was a state tournament doubles participant with Spencer Crawford last year. They lost in the first round.
The Browns decided to pair up for districts after not playing together during the regular season. Ryan is a junior.
"They understand how to play as a doubles team," St. John's co-coach Justin Swiger said "Their work ethic is off the charts and they show it everyday in practice."
The Browns and the rest of the Titans — senior Caleb Mickler, juniors Elliott Beak and Jonah Carter, sophomores Adam Zychowicz and Trevor Majdalani, and freshman Rajeev Laungani — will compete Sunday in the Ohio Tennis Coaches Association state team tournament.
This is the ninth straight year for St. John's to represent northwest Ohio at the state semifinals.
"We feel very fortunate," St. John's coach Jim Davis said, whose Titans. "I'm really proud of this group because they've worked very hard and they're very young."
In Division II, Maumee Valley Country Day seniors Annu Reddy and Navdeep Bais will compete at the state doubles tournament. They face Millersburg West Holmes' Danny Nelson and Nate Ewing in the first round.
Whitmer sets team HR record
The Whitmer softball team set a team record by hitting 27 home runs in 27 games for the season.
Senior Tori Weidinger and junior Makayla Taylor led the way with five home runs apiece. They were among eight players to hit a home run.
Kendra Pratt and Mallory Rao recorded four home runs each, Kylie Kretz and Meghan Franz added three apiece, Olivia Combs two and Jordan Hanf one.
The effort ranks fourth all-time in the Ohio. Archbold ranks No. 1 with 39 homers in 2012.
Guidelines: Please keep your comments smart and civil. Don't attack other readers personally, and keep your language decent. Comments that violate these standards, or our privacy statement or visitor's agreement, are subject to being removed and commenters are subject to being banned. To post comments, you must be a registered user on toledoblade.com. To find out more, please visit the FAQ.