Kingston girls basketball coach Strozier says he quit to be with family

KINGSTON — Kevin Strozier, who resigned his post as Kingston High's varsity girls basketball coach Nov. 12, said he left the team on the brink of their season because he wants to spend more time with his family.

Strozier, who lives in Tacoma, has two daughters, ages 7 and 11.

“It wasn’t one thing,” Strozier told the Herald about his reasons for resigning. “It wasn’t something that I had been thinking for a while about. Sometimes as a coach you just have a feeling. I’m trying to do what’s best for my family. I do want to get back into coaching, but right now I want to spend some time with my family.”

This year’s basketball season starts Dec. 3 in an away game at River Ridge High School in Lacey.

Despite his abrupt exit, Strozier had high praise for the team, which he led to the state tournament both years he served as coach.

“Those kids are a great group of girls and I’m truly going to miss those girls,” he said. “We had a very good relationship.”

“I wish them nothing but much success,” he added.

As the 2-year-old school’s first girls basketball coach, Strozier helped lead the team to the state playoffs two years in a row, finishing last season 15-5.

Strozier also worked at the school as a campus security officer.

The North Kitsap School District has not yet found a replacement for Strozier, who did not offer the district a reason for his sudden resignation, district spokeswoman Chris Case said.

Kingston Athletic Director Dan Novick said he was surprised by Strozier’s resignation, but prefers to focus on the team’s future.

“It is what it is,” he said of Strozier’s resignation. “Not to sound callous, but we prefer to look forward. We’re looking to see who can lead them.”

Filling in for Strozier until a full-time coach is found is former Bainbridge High School head girls basketball coach Penny Gienger.

Senior forward Elle Sander said the team will be a contender again this year, despite the changes.

“No matter who the coach is, we know we’re a team that can play together,” she said.

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