A central Ohio softball coaching legend has stepped down.

Westerville South High School coach Jerry Kelbley announced his retirement May 31 after 36 seasons.

South finished 4-20 overall and went 1-9 in the OCC-Buckeye Division this season.

“It was a tough decision; it’s still tough,” Kelbley said. “I’m going to miss the girls. That’s what I’m going to miss more than anything, watching them develop with their softball skills and watching them grow up and become young ladies and responsible young ladies. I’ll miss game days.”

Kelbley finished with a career record of 636-281 and guided South to 12 OCC titles, 11 district championships, five regional titles and a Division I state runner-up finish in 1994. The Wildcats also reached the state tournament in 1986, 1987, 1988 and 1991.

Kelbley, who was named OCC Coach of the Year 13 times, was inducted into the Ohio High School Fastpitch Softball Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 1995 and the Ohio Capital Conference Hall of Fame in 2014.

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