Lauwers named new West boys coach (Basketball)

May 19, 2010
Bradley Lauwers

Loyalty has its advantages. Just ask Anchorage high school basketball coach Brad Lauwers.

He stayed committed to Heritage Christian for 10 years, even though he got offers to leave. He stayed true to his coaching principals, even though he was fired from Dimond in the late 90s.

His devotion has been rewarded now that Heritage Christian has closed because it created an opportunity for Lauwers to return to the Class 4A level as the new boys coach at West.

“Heritage is the place that I coached the longest and during those times, you know, there were some possibilities and the question sometimes asked (about other jobs), but I just felt there was more to be done there and Heritage gave me a chance when I needed one,” Lauwers told me.

“I just felt like I wanted to get to a certain point. And even this year, you know, it’s kind of a feeling of peace that was the way it was meant to be.”

One door shuts, another one opens.

Lauwers, 51, will replace Hall of Fame coach Chuck White, who left West for an assistant job at Adams State College, where he will coach—ironically enough—Lauwers’ oldest son Colton. Under White, the Eagles won four ASAA state championships in his seven seasons on the bench, including last season in his final year.

They are going from one championship coach to another as Lauwers won back-to-back Class 3A state championships at Heritage Christian in 2005 and 2006. He didn’t just win titles he created a championship culture on campus, building arguably the most consistent program in the state with 10 consecutive winning seasons, six straight seasons with a first-round victory at state and eight consecutive finishes of fifth or better at state.

“I’m pretty proud of the consistency of that run,” said Lauwers, a two-time Coach of the Year Award winnner. “I loved being there, especially being at a Christian school after growing up a preacher’s kid. I felt really comfortable at Heritage. I got a chance to coach some great kids over 10 years.”

At West, Lauwers will return to the school where his coaching career got started in 1989. He coached the Eagles for two seasons and won 25 games. After that he spent the next 18 years at Dimond and Heritage. So being back on the Westside carries special significance for Lauwers.

“Having been there before I have a real appreciation for the history at West, the facilities and the fact that that’s where regions are held,” he said. “The administration is really supportive of athletics and I think that’s why you’ve seen athletics at West really improve over the last few years. All those things make it an attractive place to work.”

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