BY D’ARCY PATRICK EGAN
Port Clinton basketball head coach Ryan Hicks, 31, a local legend on the Port Clinton court while in high school, walked away from the team last week to accept a position as assistant men’s basketball coach at Terra State Community College in Fremont.
Port Clinton High School Athletic Director Rick Dominick said he was disappointed after Hicks broke the news to his Port Clinton squad last Thursday, but maintained that he understood Hicks’ decision.
It is easy to understand Terra State’s interest in Hicks. He was lauded for taking his Port Clinton teams to back-to-back Division II Sectional Championships in his four years at Port Clinton, the first since 2010. Hicks’ coaching ability made him a standout, a reason why Terra State wanted to hire him.
Hicks guided Port Clinton to a 14-10 record last fall.
“I am certainly disappointed that we are losing Coach Hicks, but I understand and support his decision,” said Dominick. “Ryan has done a great deal for Port Clinton boys basketball.
“As a First Team All-Ohio player he led us to the Division II State Championship Game in 2010. As a coach, he led us to back-to-back Division II Sectional Championship games. His teams always represented Port Clinton City Schools in an admirable fashion. They played the game of basketball the right way.
“I wish Ryan all the best in the years to come.”
Dominick said he is actively looking for a new coach, an unviable task with just three weeks remaining before the team begins practice for the upcoming season. He’s hoping to have a new head coach in place soon, joining assistant coaches Jared Rhode, Terry Horne and long-time coach Don Drusbacky.
“If I said August 10 wasn’t a bit concerning, I’d be lying,” Dominick said. “But we’ll put together a game plan and execute it.”
Hicks will join Terra State’s Head Basketball Coach Christopher Weakley, who was hired by the community college only a month ago. With Hicks at the helm, Port Clinton’s basketball squad dunked Weakley and Toledo Scott High School in a sectional final last season, 67-62.
As a player, Hicks helped propel the Port Clinton basketball squad to a 26-1 record in 2009-10. That has ironically earned him a berth in the Port Clinton High School Athletic Hall of Fame inductions next month. The 6-7 center was a star while playing at Defiance College, scoring 1,115 points in his four seasons.