Last updated: July 17. 2013 1:39PM - 785 Views

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Kyle Lovern

Sports Editor

GOODY, Ky. – Belfry assistant basketball coach Mark Thompson was officially named as the new head basketball coach for the Pirates at a press conference held Thursday afternoon at BHS.

Thompson has been an assistant at Belfry High School for four years and has coached the JV squad.

He succeeds Randy Casey, who resigned last week, to take a job as an assistant at the University of Pikeville.

Thompson played his high school basketball at the old Johns Creek High School where he graduated back in 1987. He attended the University of Kentucky and currently teaches Social Studies at BHS.

His first coaching stint was at Lexington Henry Clay as an assistant. He was there for six years. In 2003 Henry Clay had one of the top teams in the state and made it to the Final Four. He has also coached at Pike County Central before coming to Belfry. He was head coach for the Hawks for two seasons and an assistant for three years.

“We’ve been very blessed to have Mark Thompson as an assistant for four years,” Belfry principal Rod Varney said when introducing the new Pirate head coach. “I felt this is where God wanted him to be. I have all of the confidence in the world in him.”

“He has integrity that is impeccable,” Varney added. “He also has the coaching knowledge that is excellent.”

Thompson started out his comments by thanking the Belfry administration.

“It’s been a journey,” Thompson said of his coaching career. “When I came here, it immediately felt like home from day one. It is a blessing to be here.”

“I think we have outstanding students and faculty at Belfry,” Thompson said. “We have some great young talent coming in. I look forward to the opportunity.”

“I will do the best I can and will always strive to do that,” he added. “I appreciate the support that I have already gotten here.”

Thompson said the style of basketball he likes is “to play fast.” However, it depends on the kids and the talent he has as to what offense and defense he will use.

The new Pirate coach is hoping to hit the ground running with some camps and other team workouts that are allowed during the summer months.

He said he likes to use a full-court press when possible.

One of his assistants will be former Williamson High School all-stater Michael Hagy, who is currently the head baseball coach for the Pirates.

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