Lake hires Lane Bishop as new football coach

MILLBURY – Lake Local Schools has a new football coach.

The school board hired Lane Bishop, a former offensive coordinator for Elmwood Local Schools, at its Wednesday meeting.

“Lane was at the top of the list,” said board member Tim Krugh. “We’re excited. He has a presence and maturity that exceeds his years.”

Krugh said 35 candidates applied for the job and five were interviewed.

“I’m very excited to be a Lake Flyer,” Bishop said.

He is a 2015 North Baltimore High School graduate and was on the coaching staff for both football and basketball for the Tigers. Bishop then went on assist in coaching both sports at Van Buren. He was at Elmwood for four years.

Bishop said he has always looked forward to being a head coach.

“This has been a goal of mine ever since I’ve been in high school. And I really was very selective in where I wanted to go,” he said.

When Elmwood played Lake earlier this year, Bishop said he saw the Flyer community support, even during a not-so-great season.

“That was an eye-opener, that this is a community that I’d like to be a part of,” he said.

His goal is to get the kids to compete in every aspect of their daily life, Bishop said.

Superintendent Jim Witt said he was somewhat surprised with the number of applicants, but given the district’s location, facilities and reputation, it was a good problem to have sorting through the applicants.

He said Bishop will be given a supplemental contract and paid around $7,900.

Once Bishop successfully completes his student teaching and gets the proper licensure, the intent is to hire him as a teacher, Witt said.

Board member Brad Blandin said anytime a program starts over, there are a lot of opportunities.

Former football coach Josh Andrews resigned in October after being accused of inappropriate communications.

Investigators concluded that Andrews did not engage in inappropriate or unprofessional communications with any students while they were still enrolled in the district. They did find he had engaged in a pattern of inappropriate communications involving Lake alumni.

During the meeting, Witt introduced Cajon Keeton as the interim treasurer.

Keeton took over after Monica Leppelmeier took the treasurer’s post at Eastwood Local Schools.

Keeton is a full-time treasurer at Benton-Carroll-Salem in Oak Harbor.

Witt said that Keeton has a company that provides treasury services to school districts that are in between treasurers. He is at Lake on a part-time basis to satisfy the state law that a district must have a treasurer.

Witt said the job has been posted statewide and once administrators get back from break, they will continue the process and get someone hired full time, as quickly as possible.

Krugh reported that the elementary design and construction committee is meeting on an ongoing basis and last month worked on details like floor coverings.

“We’re getting down to some of the details of the project,” he said. “It’s taken a lot of work and time to get there.”

Voters in November 2021 passed a bond issue for construction of the new PK-6 building. It is expected to open in fall 2024.

Krugh also said the turf replacement project is going forward and around $300,000 has been set aside for that project.

“It won’t be enough to cover it but we’re looking at other options,” he said.

The expected life span of the existing turf was 10 years, and the district has gotten 13. The new product is expected to last eight years.

Also at the meeting, the board:

• Learned from Witt that a lot of staff and kids are sick and the hope is they get well during holiday break, which ends Jan. 3.

• Accepted the resignation of Mike Destazio as head boys golf coach and hired Casey Witt to fill the position.

• Hired Kelsey Little as cheerleading assistant and Tim Walker as track coach. Both were approved as volunteers in May.

• Set Jan. 4 at 6 p.m. for its organizational meeting with the regular meeting to follow.

• Accepted donations of $300 in coats, hats and gloves from Main Street Church; $1,500 in chemistry items from Jason Trzcinski; $247 from Ken Gilsdorf and $100 from Deb Wilburn for the veterans wall; $30 in personal hygiene items from Julie and Brad Pieper; $2,200 for Camp Michindoh tuition from an anonymous donor; and $350 from the Eastern Maumee Bay Chamber for the holiday sharing programs.