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Hempfield boys basketball coach Nesser ousted

| Monday, April 29, 2013, 10:15 p.m.

The Hempfield Area School Board voted, 6-2, Monday night to open the boys basketball coach position, held by Jim Nesser.

“I'm a little surprised,” Nesser said. “We won three section titles and won 22 consecutive home games. They didn't give me a reason why. I guess it's not about winning.”

Board member Randy Stoner, who voted to hire Nesser in 2009, was the only board member to abstain. When Stoner originally refused to say why he didn't vote, board member Jeanne Smith said he must explain his decision under voting rules. He then said, “I don't feel comfortable with my decision.”

The vote came after a spirited executive session, with board member Diane Ciabattoni phoning in a vote.

“We don't feel we're getting rid of Mr. Nesser,” Hempfield School Board President Sonya Brajdic said. “He can reapply if he wants to.”

Brajdic refused to answer if the board received complaints from parents.

Nesser is unsure if he will reapply. He said he's weighing his options.

Nesser coached four seasons at Hempfield, where his teams compiled a 58-32 record, including a 36-10 mark the past two seasons. Hempfield won or shared three section titles, but it did not win a game in the playoffs.

Nesser was hired to replace Bill Swan, who coached eight seasons at Hempfield.

Rich Gazarik contributed. Paul Schofield is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at pschofield@tribweb.com or via Twitter @Schofield_Trib.

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