John Stahl sees a lot of potential in the Upper Arlington High School girls volleyball team for next season, and that made it difficult for him to step down as coach after two seasons.

John Stahl sees a lot of potential in the Upper Arlington High School girls volleyball team for next season, and that made it difficult for him to step down as coach after two seasons.

"It's a real good situation for whoever takes over," said Stahl, who turned in his resignation to athletics director Chris Potts on Feb. 18. "The pieces are in place to have a successful season. I know they'll be really good this year. I'd be surprised if they're not in the running for the (OCC-Central Division) championship."

Stahl cited a busy schedule as the primary reason for his decision.

"I have quite a few things going on volleyball-wise and with my family," said Stahl, who serves as an assistant with the Ohio State men's team. "A lot of things went into it. It was a hard decision to make."

Stahl compiled a 15-31 record during his tenure. The Golden Bears went 3-20 overall and 1-9 in the OCC-Buckeye in 2007 with a roster that had no seniors and no varsity experience, but markedly improved last season, finishing 12-11 overall and 6-8 in the OCC-Central.

UA tied Hilliard Darby for fourth in the OCC-Central behind Dublin Coffman (14-0), Hilliard Davidson (10-4) and Central Crossing (8-6) and ahead of Thomas Worthington (5-9) and Worthington Kilbourne (5-9) and Westland (2-12).

The Bears lost to Westerville North 25-21, 25-13, 19-25, 25-14 in the second round of the Division I district tournament after having a first-round bye.

UA loses only one senior and expects to return nine juniors, three sophomores and one freshman.

"He made some strides with our program," Potts said of Stahl, a 1973 UA graduate. "I told John that he's leaving with the program better than it was when he got here. I appreciate all the time and effort he put in. He was a class act."

Potts said no timetable has been set for naming Stahl's successor. One possible candidate is Brian Pomerantz, who served as Stahl's assistant and will enter his third year as the boys volleyball coach this spring.

"He has expressed some interest," Potts said. "With Brian's familiarity with the program -- not just with the girls, but with the boys -- he'll certainly be a candidate."