Puzey resigns at Douglas
by Joey Crandall
Nevada Appeal News Service
The Douglas High School softball team entered the season with an outstanding shot to take its first state title since 1992.
The Lady Tigers had three Division I signees, boasted the three top pitchers in the state and enjoyed a torrid start early in the season that included two wins over defending state champ Centennial and a big win over Northern Nevada’s other power, McQueen.
What started out with a ton of promise turned into a virtual nightmare for the Tigers, as 2004 Sierra League Player of the Year Brittany Puzey broke her thumb sliding into first base at a mid-March tournament and Kayla Dunn, one of the most prolific hitters in Northern Nevada history, went down with a bad knee injury in late March.
Thursday, the Tigers were dealt another blow.
After two seasons at the helm of the program, head coach Jim Puzey resigned his position.
“It was just not working out,” Douglas athletic director Steve Wilcox said. “It was an accumulation of things over time.
“He’s done a hell of a job for us and he is a hell of a softball coach. I’ve got nothing but respect for what he has done with this program.”
Wilcox said he was unable to go into details about the resignation, but sources close to the program said it was due to an incident at Wednesday afternoon’s practice.
Puzey allegedly lost his temper about 15 minutes into practice and threw an aluminum bat into the dugout, breaking the bat which belonged to a player.
Sources say he proceeded to shout aggressively at the team for several minutes before sending the entire team home.
He spoke to the parent of the player whose bat was broken Wednesday night and apologized for his actions, but the parent asked him to resign.
Puzey tendered his resignation letter to Wilcox Thursday morning.
Puzey guided Douglas to a 61-18 record in two seasons. The Tigers, despite their midseason troubles, are still in the hunt for a league championship heading into the final weekend of the regular season.
Attempts to reach Puzey Thursday afternoon were unsuccessful.
Tom Keck, the coach of the junior varsity program, will assume coaching responsibilities for the remainder of the season and Mark Kizer will coach the junior varsity team through it’s final three games.