Former Brentsville District High School girls basketball coach Sonya Smith, who left coaching to work as an official, has benched herself again. She is taking over the Osbourn Park girls basketball program.
Smith coached at Brentsville for three years in the early 1990s and later served as junior varsity coach at Stonewall Jackson, where she works as a registrar in the guidance office.
While recovering from an injury last season, Smith, 41, was the official clock operator at several Osbourn Park games. She saw potential in the Yellow Jackets, who went 6-16 under Doug Poppe, who resigned after the season.
"It can be a successful program," said Smith, the lone female head girls basketball coach in the seven-school Cardinal District.
Osbourn Park graduated just three players from last season's team. Forward Heather Sanden, a rising senior, led the Yellow Jackets in scoring with 7.1 points per game. All six of the team's wins came against Hylton, Osbourn and Stonewall Jackson.
As an official, Smith would notice what offenses and defenses many of the teams would run. She hopes to employ that knowledge next season.
"I think that's a little bit of an asset," she said. "Knowing the rules of the game as an official along with knowing the teams makes it a benefit."
Osbourn Park Athletics Director Dan Evans said the school interviewed five candidates for the girls basketball vacancy.
Osbourn High School still seeks a girls basketball coach to replace Renee Leake, who resigned in May.
More New Coaches
Colonial Forge, the high school opening this fall in Stafford County, has named two more head coaches.
Torie Helmer, a recent Southwest Missouri State University graduate, will coach girls cross-country. Helmer is the daughter of Ron Helmer, director of track and field and cross-country at Georgetown University.
Camilla Britton, an aquatics supervisor with the Stafford County Department of Parks and Recreation, will coach the Eagles' boys and girls swimming teams.
Colonial Forge still is seeking baseball and lacrosse coaches.