Peppard to head girls' hoops team

Darrin Peppard was notified Tuesday that he will be the new head coach of the girls' basketball program at Kingman High School.

He takes over the position that Joe Juelfs occupied the past two seasons.

Peppard, who coaches the boys' tennis team, was the boys' basketball junior varsity coach and leaves a vacancy at that spot.

"I'm very excited about it.

I think it's going to be great, I really do," Peppard said.

"It's been a long time since I coached girls.

That's how I started in coaching, actually, was coaching elementary school girls.

When I student taught I was a varsity assistant for a school in Wyoming, but it's been 11 years since I coached girls so it'll be a transition."

Peppard brings more than a dozen years of coaching experience to the program.

"I've been coaching since about '90, but my true coaching since I've been teaching has been since '96 that I've been coaching basketball in Kingman," Peppard said.

"I coached two years of seventh grade boys at the junior high school, two years of eighth grade boys at the junior high and three years of coaching junior varsity (boys) with Dave Vance."

Peppard said coaching played a key role in his decision to become a teacher.

"It goes all the way back to when I was in college.

It's kind of what guided me to education is I got started coaching some elementary school basketball teams and that guided me to coaching as part of my career," Peppard said.

There will be some changes in the style of play of the girls' team under the new coach.

"Offensively we'll use a different system, once that is more my personality.

I think Joe did a great job, but I'll use one that is more my style," Peppard said.

"Defensively we'll make our defense what we rely on.

We're going to look to put on a lot of high-pressure defense.

Offensively we're going to look for two cuts off every trip to the basket.

We'll look for the easiest shot we can get on every trip."

Peppard has a solid nucleus of returning letter winners to work with.

He's already spoken to Iris Savatgy, Alicia Cesspooch and Julia Lasiloo and expects Lindsay Adams, Leslie Aaron and Tabitha Huffer to return this season.

"I met with a few returning players, Iris Savatgy, Alicia Cesspooch and Julia Lasiloo, because I have them in class," Peppard said.

"I have my first meeting (today)."

Jeremy Fessler will return as an assistant with the girls' program, but there is still one open position for an assistant coach.

"Jeremy, philosophically, is a lot like me," Peppard said.

"We see eye-to-eye on a lot of things about how the game should be run and how practices should be run and that's encouraging."

Kingman athletics director Tim Casson said he was pleased to hire Peppard.

"I felt good about being able to promote from within," Casson said.

"I know he's very anxious to get organized and get started."

Peppard confirmed he wants to get on with the organizational stages of preparing for the season.

"It's going to be great," Peppard said.

"It's definitely a challenge I'm looking forward to."