Creek Girls’ and Boys’ Head Basketball Coaches Resign, Leaving Gaps in the Roster


Courtesy of Molly Dorighi

The varsity girls’ basketball team celebrates a win with former head coach Kent Dertinger (right), who retired early last week. The boys’ basketball team head coach, Klint Evans, also retired at the same time as Dertinger.

Quinn Rudnick, Managing & Sports Editor

Creek boys’ basketball head coach Kent Dertinger and girls’ basketball head coach Clinton Evans both announced their resignation from the teams early last week. The former coaches, who have each led their teams to multiple state championships, will remain at Creek as teachers in the math department.

“I feel sad and happy at the same time. I feel like I am letting people down that I care a lot about.  We invested a lot of time and energy into each other and to not see it through will always affect me,” Evans said. “It is still too new to feel any different about it now. I won’t [really know] how I feel until next season starts and I am not on the bench with that group.”

Evans left the team to spend more time with his family, planning to support his 12-year-old son’s athletics and travel to South Africa for a safari this summer.

“The reason for stepping away from coaching is to spend more time with my family. My son is 12 and is involved in a lot of sports, and we travel a lot,” Evans said. “I don’t want to miss him growing up. Time goes fast.”

Evans coached the girls’ basketball team for five seasons, and led the team to their first state championship in 2019. The team recognizes him as a coach that had a strong sense of confidence in his team, and consistently led them to try their best.

“I will remember the belief he had in all of us. Before every game on top of our scouting report he always wrote, ‘play hard, play smart, play together.’ Those words were something that his coach told him and he passed down to us,” sophomore shooting and point guard Molly Dorighi said. “I will definitely be keeping that quote with me for the rest of my life.”

The girls’ basketball team was devastated to hear the news of their coach’s retirement. The team shares a lot of memories with Evans, and are sad to see him go. Some of the team members have been working with Evans since middle school, when they practiced with the Little Bruins basketball camps.

“There were definitely tears when Coach Evans told us the situation. He came to Creek as a new coach several years ago, so a lot of our first interactions with him were when we were in middle school doing the Little Bruins camps,” Dorighi said. “We were fans then so I am grateful we got the opportunity to be coached by Evans once we actually became Bruin basketball players.”

Dorighi believes that upperclassmen players will have to begin the season by introducing different learning opportunities for both the team and whomever becomes the new head coach.

“Our rising juniors and seniors will need to step up. A new coach means there will be teachable moments for both the student athletes and the coach. [The team] is a close group but I am sure there will be a learning curve,” Dorighi said. “This upcoming season our team is really going to have to be flexible with new challenges, new expectations and new plays but I also think the team dynamic can get even stronger.”

The boys’ basketball team is in a similar situation; head coach Kent Dertinger also resigned to spend more time with his family.

“I stepped away from coaching to be able to spend more time with my family. My daughter is a junior and will be heading off to college after her senior year and my eighth grade son plays hockey,” Dertinger said. “I want to be able to spend more time with my wife, who also teaches math at Creek, and to be able to better support my own kids with what activities or sports they are involved with. Stepping away from coaching will allow me to do those things which I also very much love.”

Dertinger had been coaching basketball for 21 years at Creek, seven of which were as the head coach. He led the team to three Centennial League Titles, as well as the Elite Eight and the Final Four twice. Because of his long history with coaching boys’ basketball, Dertinger has found leaving the team especially hard. 

“It was certainly hard to step away from something that I have enjoyed doing for so many years,” Dertinger said. “I will certainly miss the relationships formed with my players, with the other coaches on staff, as well as the competitive side of coaching, as I love to compete.”

Dertinger’s players recognized his commitment to his job, and described him as a coach who deeply trusted his players and wanted them to do well.

“I think he created a very personal relationship with each of the players where he was able to know your game and just be friends with you rather than just strict you [and] strict on what you’re supposed to do,” junior point guard Trey Zurcher said.

Although the boys’ basketball team has lost their head coach, they’re interested to see what new experiences will come when a new coach is introduced.

“A new perspective might be cool. I think it might [bring] new energy to the team just as all new beginnings do; with all our seniors leaving,” junior forward Alex Condon said. “I think the new idea foundation to start building on will be beneficial for us for sure.”

For both the girls’ and boys’ basketball teams, seeing their head coaches leave the team will be an emotional process, but both teams believe their players and staff will stay competitive and well prepared for their next seasons. 

“I am sure that the players were hurt at first, but they are the ones that have made Creek basketball a power in Colorado. They will adjust to the new coach, learn new things, and still be an amazing team.” Evans said.

Additional contributions by Cael Clancy.