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Strohl takes over Bomber girls program

Published April 24. 2013 05:04PM

The Palmerton girls' basketball team will welcome back a familiar face to the sidelines, while the boys' basketball team's coaching situation remains in limbo.

By a unanimous vote, the school board agreed on Tuesday to approve Rodney Strohl as girls' coach, effective for the 2013-14 school year, with salary pending the negotiated contract.

Prior to that decision, the board agreed to accept the resignation of former coach Donald Delich, effective March 19, 2013.

Contacted after the meeting, Delich told the TIMES NEWS he decided to leave the coaching ranks to spend more time with his family.

"I've been coaching for a very long time," Delich said. "In spite of the fact that I've been blessed in having a lot of great kids over the years that I've had the opportunity to work with, my wife and I have now been retired for the last three years, and it was time to spend some time with my wife, family, and grandkids."

Delich added "basketball is a 10-month coaching job in order to be successful, and I'm just not willing to do that any more. I just think it was someone else's turn; I left on my accord."

"I certainly will miss it," he said. "We return a really talented group of kids."

Under his tenure the past 10 seasons, the team compiled a record of 136 wins and 107 losses.

Contacted this morning, Strohl told the TIMES NEWS he was "excited" to return as coach. He hasn't totally been away from the game since he has been the clock operator at Palmerton home games.

Strohl coached the team for six years, from the 1993-94 season through the 1998-99 season. He guided the team to a record of 130-41, and won a district championship in 1997.

While the girls' program appears to be on solid ground, the boys' team remains without a coach after the board, on a 6-2 vote, with one abstention, rejected a motion to appoint Frank McCarroll as head boys' basketball coach, effective for the 2013-14 school year, salary pending negotiated contract.

Directors Josann Harry, Joshua Smale, Sherry Haas, Charles Gildner, Clarence Myers, and board President Tammy Recker were opposed. Directors Darlene Yeakel and Susan Debski were in favor. Director Barry Scherer abstained.

Afterward, Scherer questioned what the next step was, to which Debra Demyanovich, director of human resources, stated it would be to readvertise for the position.

McCarroll finished this past season as the team's coach on an interim basis after then-head coach Michael Stefanek submitted his resignation to the district in December.

That marked the second time in three years that the boys' team finished the season with an interim coach.

In 2010, then-head coach Mike Snyder was suspended during that season, and assistant coach Mark Maholick took over the team for the remainder of that year.

Maholick applied for the head coaching post, but never received the votes needed to be named to the position, and Stefanek was eventually hired to take over.

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