BOONE GROVE | When former Boone Grove girls basketball coach Candy Wilson decided to leave the program for Valparaiso, director of athletics Kerrie Schludecker didn’t have to look far for a replacement.
Schludecker received numerous applications, but decided to stay in-house and recommend former girls basketball coach and current girls volleyball coach Linda Eleftheri at the Porter Twp. School Corporation board meeting on Thursday night.
Eleftheri was approved along with assistant coach Jessica Fauser. Eleftheri will continue to coach the volleyball team this season, a dual role she thrived in during the 1990’s.
“The opportunity arose and it was just a perfect fit,” Eleftheri said. “I’m so involved with the kids from volleyball and I know many of them. I’m very excited.”
Eleftheri led the girls basketball team to two Porter County Conference round robin championships and three tournament titles during her 10-year stretch as the head coach ranging from 1986 to 1996.
“I had two young boys when I decided to step down so I could concentrate on them,” Eleftheri said. “I can remember in my last year when (son) Michael was young, he got pneumonia. I was going from the school to practices to the hospital to games. It finally got to the point when I was seeing black spots in my classroom I was so burnt out.”
Michael, a former star point guard for Boone Grove, is a senior in college while Sam is entering his senior year with the Wolves. Eleftheri spent much of the last 17 years coaching her two sons in AAU basketball. Now that both kids are grown up, Eleftheri is excited to get back into coaching and Schludecker couldn’t be more pleased.
“We’re very fortunate to have her,” Schludecker said. “I wanted someone that knew how to develop players. She enjoys working with all levels. She has an impressive resume as a coach and a former player. The student-athletes respond well to her.”
Fauser played under Wilson and graduated from Boone Grove in 2008. Fauser teaches math at Boone Grove Middle School and played one year of basketball at Manchester College.