Mowery steps down at United

HANOVERTON-Matt Mower feels the United boys basketball program is on the right track, but he will not be on the bench to see the end of the rebuilding project.

Mowery’s resignation as head coach was announced at Wednesday’s board of education meeting.

His overall record in three seasons as head coach was 6-60. He previously was an assistant at United for three years and Salem for one year.

“When I took the job, I was told that wins and losses weren’t the main priority right away,” Mowery said. “My job was to develop a summer program and develop a youth program so we could get moving in the right direction. I feel like we were making strides.”

Mowery-who is getting married this summer-felt he no longer had the time or the community support to keep the program moving.

“Getting married is obviously a huge part of my decision to step down,” Mowery said. “It’s a big commitment. Also, I think some patience was starting to wear thin.

“Building a program from the ground up like we were trying to do requires a lot of time. I think the administration was behind me, but there were some in the community who were beginning to lose patience.”

Mowery also acknowledged that he needed a break mentally. He lost his mother to brain cancer halfway through his first season and also lost his grandmother to cancer halfway through his second season.

“There was a lot strain with losing both my mother and my grandmother,” Mowery said. “I was tired.”

The Eagles finished the 2013-14 season at 3-20, their most wins under Mowery. However, he could see better things on the horizon. The Eagles had three straight junior high teams make championship game appearances. Freshman Jake Clark led the varsity team in scoring this past season.

“Overall, it was the best season of my time here,” Mowery said. “The kids worked hard and I could see the improvement. The youth and summer programs were starting to pay off.”

Mowery-who teaches at United-said he has a couple of schools interested in hiring him as an assistant coach next season, which he intends to take advantage of.

“It will be nice to be able to enjoy the game without all of the demands of a head coach,” Mowery said. “I definitely want to be a head coach again sometime, but now I need a break.”