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Coaching: St. Vrain athletics programs looking to fill plenty of vacancies

LONGMONT — Every year there is coaching turnover among prep athletics programs.

And this year in the St. Vrain school district, there is certainly no shortage of schools looking to fill coaching vacancies in their programs.

“We fortunately live in a pretty established district,” Silver Creek athletics director Phil Borchelt said. “But it’s not unusual to have those years where you have a higher percentage. People leave to move on and do other things. It’s a bigger commitment than people think.”

The biggest hire so far in the district has come at Skyline. Athletic director Michael Green tabbed Scarlett Gemm to take over the Falcons’ struggling softball program that has won just seven games in the past three seasons.

A 28-year-old special education teacher and two-year junior varsity girls soccer coach at Longmont High School, Gemm thinks she has what it takes to help rebuild softball interest at Skyline.

“I really felt like my skill set would match that,” Gemm said. “I’ve been at a similar type program down at Aurora Central and I felt like I would be a good fit.”

Gemm also coached softball and soccer at two different high schools in Cleveland. She played both at nearby Baldwin-Wallace College. She also coached middle school basketball and soccer in the Denver Public school system.

Skyline has filled a big staffing hole, but Mead is still working on filling another. The Mavericks athletics staff is wrapping up the application-collecting process in the search for a new head football coach. They’ll go through a screening early next week.

The Mead staff will start interviewing the week of March 19 to find who will lead the young program as it moves up to Class 3A next season.

“Moving up to 3A is a challenge and we’re looking for someone who’s excited about the challenge,” Mead athletic director Darin Reese said. “Somebody that can certainly energize our program. Ideally, we’d like to have someone in the building teaching.”

Athletic director Kathy Leiding said Lyons High School also is preparing to more aggressively look for a replacement for former head football coach John Nichols, who resigned last month. Until now, she has been waiting to find out what teaching jobs will be available in the building.

In all, six head coaching positions remain open in the St. Vrain district — Niwot cross country, Frederick boys golf, Mead football, Longmont softball, Longmont cross country, Skyline boys golf and Silver Creek dance.

Frederick High School has hired two assistant track coaches, Scott Refel, who was a football volunteer in the fall, and Sarah Heller, who also is the girls swim coach at Niwot.

Longmont High School also has added two new track assistants. Jenean Wetterstrom will be coaching long jump and triple jump, and Darian Varn will help with the pole vault.

Craig Lyneis and Erin Ehrmantraut will be joining the Silver Creek track team this season, as well.