The only coach to ever lead a Lakota East girls’ basketball team to a winning season is stepping down, so she can spend more time with her 8-year-old daughter.Drew, who played basketball at Xavier and professionally overseas, took over the Lakota East girls’ basketball program before the 2009-2010 season after serving as the head coach at Colerain for 6 seasons. At Colerain, Drew helped the program win its first-ever district title in 2005.
In her first season at East, the Thunderhawks finished 13-11 and 6-8 in the Greater Miami Conference. Prior to her arrival, the East program had never won more than 8 games in a season and was a combined 54-202 over the course of 12 seasons.
In her second season at the helm, Drew led East to a 19-6 overall record and a 10-4 mark within the GMC, which was good enough to be part of a 3-way tie for second place, in 2010-2011.
In 2011-2012, East was 13-8, 9-5 in the GMC and this past season the team finished 10-15, 7-7 in the GMC.
“This has been one of the hardest decisions I have had to make,” Drew said. “It is simply a sacrifice for my family at this time.
“Basketball has afforded me so many opportunities for which I am forever grateful. I will miss my girls and the relationships I have made over the years more than any statistical win. It has been a pleasure to coach at Lakota East and I will continue to teach Butler Tech’s Sports Medicine program here at Lakota East. I would like to thank all the Lakota East and Colerain families for the support over the years. They are and have been a blessing in my life.”
In her career at East, Drew posted a 55-40 overall record. In other words, Drew led East to more wins in 4 seasons than East had been able to win its previous 12.
“Nikki Drew is exceptional in every area of coaching – however she is an even better person,” Lakota athletic director Richard Bryant said. “The decision that she has made is selfless and speaks volumes about her character.”
Bryant alerted the media Thursday of the job opening of head girls’ basketball coach at Lakota East. He did not comment if East’s assistant coaches have applied for the position. Former Xavier standout Larry Sykes, who also had a brief stint in the NBA, served as the varsity assistant the past two seasons. He was briefly the girls’ basketball head coach at Purcell Marian.
All interested individuals should provide the application, letter of interest and resume electronically to athletic director Richard Bryant at Richard.Bryant@lakotaonline.com. The deadline to apply is March 22. The hiring process is expected to be completed by April 5.