Panther Creek announced Monday in an email to the media that boys basketball coach L.J. Hepp, who has served as head coach for varsity men’s basketball for five of Panther Creek’s eight years, is stepping down to focus on being athletics director.
Hepp guided this year’s Catamounts team to a 22-6 record and a trip to the 4A East regional.
Hepp is 86-48 in his five years as Catamounts coach, which started when the school opened from 2006-09 and picked up again in 2013.
From the news release, Panther Creek principal Rodney Nelson said, “Coach Hepp’s commitment to Panther Creek and his teams has been unwavering. The success of men’s basketball at Panther Creek is directly related to Coach Hepp’s passion for the sport and his love of teaching and developing student-athletes. After much thought, Coach Hepp has decided to focus fully on his duties as AD. First and foremost, L.J. is a devoted husband and father, and I hope he will be able to find more time for his wife and two young kids.”
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Hepp’s statement read, “Panther Creek has a special place in my heart. Starting the men’s basketball program is a highlight of my career. The thing I’ll miss the most is the coach-player relationships that develop from coaching a team. Being AD certainly offers many opportunities for meaningful relationships with student-athletes, coaches, parents, and the supportive PC community. Coaching is in my blood and I’ll miss it, but I’m really looking forward to spending more time with my wife Sondra as we raise our daughter Colby and our son Jacob.”