After mid-season departure, SM East looking for new girls basketball coach

Austin Klumpe

SM East’s varsity girls basketball team is looking for a new head coach for the second time in as many years.

School officials confirmed that Austin Klumpe, who came to the team before its 2013-2014 season, stepped down as head coach on Feb. 17. Asked about the reason for his departure, Klumpe declined to comment. SM East athletic director Kelli Kurle said she could not discuss personnel matters.

Klumpe was announced as Scott Stein’s replacement in April 2013. He had served as an assistant coach for the Emporia State University women’s team before accepting the position at SM East.

Klumpe left the team with three games left in the regular season. He wasn’t on the sidelines for the Feb. 24 SM East home game against Lawrence, and the game program listed former assistant TJ Taylor as the head coach. Klumpe returned to the classroom after his departure from the team however, continuing to instruct business classes at the school.

Klumpe had stressed a desire to improve youth programs in the area, and made a push to increase participation in youth camps. During his first season with SM East, he coached the team to a 7-14 record. The team finished this year 1-20.

In three years with the Lancers, Klumpe’s predecessor Stein piloted the program to a 27-34 record, going 6-14 his final year.