Mountlake Terrace athletic director/assistant boys basketball coach Kim Stewart will be donning a different hat this winter.
As a result of the unexpected departure of girls basketball coach Nick Greenwell earlier this spring, Stewart has agreed to become the interim coach for the girls team for the 2003-04 season while the school searches for a permanent replacement.
Greenwell resigned to accept a similar position at Tumwater High School, in part to be closer to his wife’s family.
After discussions with principal Mark Baier and Edmonds District athletic director Terri McMahan, Stewart decided to take to the position on an interim basis.
“We thought it was best for the moment,” Stewart said. “We didn’t want to rush into anything. We want to find the best person for the job long term. I really think our girls … deserve the best. We want the best for them.”
This will be the first time Stewart has coached girls basketball at the high school level, though he has run camps and clinics for more than 20 years.
Stewart previously has been head boys basketball coach at Lynnwood, Ballard and Ingraham high schools.
“I’m sure there’s some difference,” Stewart said. “I’ve worked with them (next year’s girls team) a little bit … they are a good group of kids. They’re eager to learn. That’s all I need.”
Stewart has attended some open gyms and was able to catch some of the team’s games in the Edmonds District Spring/Summer League in June, so he has a pretty good idea of the talent he will be working with in the winter.
A couple of ex-college players have been hired by the district and Stewart is hoping to get them involved in the program.
Stewart played basketball at the University of Washington under legendary coach Marv Harshman from 1974-78.
He was drafted by the Los Angeles Lakers in the sixth round. Stewart was expected to go higher in the draft but he suffered a severe late-season leg injury.
After college, Stewart played for one year in Austria, which he described as a great experience.
“It’s different,” Stewart said of his time in Vienna. “There are only two Americans on each team.”
But one day Stewart woke up and decided that it was time to get on with his life.
He returned to the Northwest and was hired as the UW junior varsity coach by Harshman.
Stewart then spent six years as the head boys coach at Ballard and then coached at Ingraham for the next six years, where he was a teacher.
An opening at Lynnwood High School then drew Stewart’s attention. He lived in the area and the challenge of turning around a program that was 0-41 over a two-year span was irresistible.
“One of the best moves in my life was coming to the Edmonds School District,” Stewart said.
Stewart spent four years at Lynnwood and then moved to Mountlake Terrace, where he was hired as the athletic director.
For the last six years, Stewart has been an assistant for the boys program — three as the freshman coach and three as the junior varsity coach.