Belleville West girls basketball coach Clayton Fisher turned in his resignation after nine years on the sidelines.
“I guess it isn’t official until the next Belleville (District 201) board meeting, but I have resigned,“ Fisher said. “It’s just time to take a little break. ... It just gets to be a grind. For at least next year, I won’t be coaching basketball.”
Fisher will continue to coach the West boys golf team.
A fixture in the Belleville West basketball program since the late 1990s and early 2000s when he coached the Maroons boys freshmen and junior-varsity teams and was an assistant under Bill Schmidt with the varsity program, Fisher took over the girls program in the 2006-07 season.
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The Maroons won just four games that season and 10 the next year. But in 2008-09, West won 27-4 and won the Southwestern Conference title. Since that time, West has been a consistent program, averaging more than 20 wins per season and winning five regional titles in the past seven years.
“There have been many highlights over the last nine years. But that first group of girls is a very special memory for me. We weren’t very good the first year when we won four games and then we were a little better the next season. But for that same group of girls to win 27 games and a conference title was very special. They had worked so hard and to see how far they came in three years.... that’s what its all about.”
Fisher concludes his career at West with a record of 163-96. His teams won nine tournaments and at one time during the past two years reached 10 straight tournament title games.
“It’s been a great ride and I’ve had the privledge of working with many great young ladies. My assistant coaches also have been wonderful and we never would have achieved the things we did without them,” Fisher said. “But it’s time to take s step back and relax a little bit.”