Girls basketball: Saffert steps down at Cary-Grove
Cary-Grove girls basketball coach Rod Saffert is resigning as the Trojans' varsity coach.
Saffert has been a fixture on the Cary-Grove bench. He's been coaching there 26 years, the last 13 as varsity coach.
But he said recently the job isn't quite what it used to be.
"The challenges that I face being in charge have become too difficult and too stressful to manage," Saffert said. "They have taken away my focus, which used to be helping these young ladies succeed in life and continuing a winning tradition, and replaced it with an unobtainable outside standard that would be hard for any coach to live up to."
Saffert's teams have enjoyed tremendous success. They won six regional championships, most recently in 2018. His 2011 team went 27-4, and both the 2008 and 2010 teams finished 26-4. From 2008 to 2013, the Trojans won 20 games six straight years.
Overall, Saffert went 248-135 in his 13 seasons.
"I thank Cary-Grove for giving me this opportunity, a chance to give half of my life to something so meaningful and memorable," Saffert said. "It has truly been a remarkable journey for me, a journey I will always cherish and reflect on positively. I wish it didn't have to come to a close, but it has, and I understand why."
Cary-Grove will be the third Fox Valley Conference school with a new coach next year joining Burlington Central (Collin Kalamatas) and Hampshire (Eric Samuelson).
"I would like to thank everyone who has played a part in my exciting career: the players, the coaches, the referees, the athletic directors, the principals, the office workers, the janitors, the community, the boosters, and everyone else I just don't have enough time or space to thank," Saffert said. "A special thank you to the conference coaches I've had the pleasure to battle against for so many years. I will absolutely miss competing against all of you. I wish you nothing but the best of luck for the rest of your careers.
"Though my heart will hurt for a while, I will move on, and I want the Cary-Grove girls basketball program to do the same. I desire nothing but the best for all of the coaches and players involved in the years to come. Be Cary-Grove, Trojans, and enjoy every second of your future successes."