Dr. Stephen P. Smith ’97, ’99 MEd will take over the Hornet golf program next season, replacing Dr. Bill Kuchler, who is retiring from active coaching after five seasons directing the program. Kuchler will stay with the College, continuing as an associate professor of sport management.
Smith has served as an assistant coach for 14 seasons with various teams, including the last five with the golf program. He assisted for seven years with the LC baseball squad after graduation, and also worked as the strength and conditioning coach for the cross country and track and field teams.
Smith will continue to head the department’s athletic game administration program, aimed at fostering a positive environment at all home contests. He is also an assistant professor of health and physical education at LC. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from LC and his doctorate from the University of Virginia.
“Bill has done a wonderful job with the golf team and we thank him for his leadership the last five seasons,” said Dr. Jack Toms ’69, LC director of athletics. “We take great pride in this program and believe Steve can step in and continue our improvement and climb towards the top of the Old Dominion Athletic Conference. He is very well respected due to his extensive experience at LC. “
The Hornets will lose just one player to graduation and two of three all-conference performers are slated to return. LC finished strong at the ODAC Championship Tournament in April, taking fourth place.
“We have a great group of experienced student-athletes coming back, so we look forward to an outstanding season,” Smith said. “Bill left this program in very good shape, and I’d like to build off his success and elevate this team to the next level. It is also exciting to have the opportunity to serve as head coach after working as an assistant for 14 years in various sports.”