The Delaware Christian School softball team will have a new coach next spring.
Bill Ferrigno recently stepped down after five seasons as coach. According to Ferrigno, Matt Heidorn, who had been coaching the junior high team, has been named his successor and assistant Tenille Schoonover will remain on the varsity coaching staff.
"Being part of the DCS sports program has been a true blessing for me and my family," Ferrigno said. "I've been able to coach my daughter and so many other talented and smart young ladies and will truly miss this interaction. But it's important to know when it's time to step aside, and that time has come."
Delaware Christian finished 8-11 overall and 4-7 in the MOCAL this spring. Seeded 10th of 16 teams in the Division IV district tournament, it lost to sixth-seeded Madison Christian 10-0 in five innings in the first round May 14.
The Eagles loses three seniors in Holly Bach (1B), Jessica Kapraly (P/3B) and Shannon Ridge (2B).
"I have been involved with DCS sports for seven years and don't regret for one bit the amount of time and sacrifice it takes to coach the softball program," Ferrigno said. "Very few people get the opportunity to mentor young people in such a positive way through high school athletics. I couldn't have asked for a better group of young ladies to end my coaching with.
"The girls gave so much effort this season. But most importantly, they played so well together as a team. First and foremost, my goal was always to have a positive influence on the girls and help them become better students and athletes and to feel better about themselves. Ohio high school athletics is supposed to be about mentoring and building up the youth, a charge that too many programs sacrifice for a winning record."
Ferrigno was awarded the OHSAA Sportsmanship and Integrity Award in 2012, when the Eagles finished 16-3 overall and went 11-1 in the MOCAL to win their first league championship.
"I've coached through seasons where we lost nearly every game, to a season ending in a league championship last year, and still it's the relationships with the players and their families that matter the most," he said.