Fort Mill in the market for new girls’ basketball coach

mbanks@comporium.netApril 1, 2013 

— Officials at Fort Mill High are on the hunt for a new varsity girls’ basketball coach after Christene Benyak was dismissed after the season.

Benyak, who posted a 33-60 record in four years as head coach of the Lady Jackets, made just one trip to the playoffs during her time at the helm.

Benyak, 29, remains at the school as a teacher. Benyak served as an assistant varsity coach for two seasons before taking over as head coach in the 2009-10 season.

She graduated from Mount Union College in Ohio where she played basketball for four years.

The Lady Jackets went to the playoffs during the 2011-12 season, but were eliminated in the first round by Union County. This past season Benyak and the Lady Jackets won the Battle of the Border tournament during the Christmas break at Landrum High School, but struggled coming back into Region III play, going just 3-11 and finishing 9-14 overall.

“It’s disappointing, but it is what it is,” she said. “It’s not about me. It’s about the girls and making them better. We made a lot of steps in the right direction I think, since I took over.”

Athletic Director Dwayne Hartsoe agreed.

Hartsoe, who wasn’t with the school when Benyak was hired, said she had brought the program a long way since the teams split when Nation Ford High School opened.

Fort Mill had won just five games in two years after the split that formed Nation Ford. Benyak was then hired and won 13 games in her first two years and then 11 in her third year, before taking a step backward this year.

Hartsoe said Fort Mill needs a coach to get the program to another level.

“At the end of each year, we sit down with our coaches and evaluate the program,” Hartsoe said. “We felt like we needed to go in a different direction with the girls’ basketball program. We are trying to find a head coach who is experienced at the varsity level and can get to the next level with the varsity program.”

Hartsoe said the school has received about 44 resumes and is in the process of interviewing applicants. He said he hopes to have a decision in the next couple of weeks.

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