Greencastle's Lewis steps down after five seasons as boys' basketball coach

Dan Sostek
Chambersburg Public Opinion
Greencastle's Rick Lewis coaches the Blue Devils. Greencastle defeated Donegal 77-61 in PIAA D3 playoffs on Monday, February 19, 2018.

Following a tenure highlighted by back-to-back state playoff appearances in 2017 and 2018, Greencastle-Antrim basketball coach Rick Lewis' resignation was accepted by the district's school board on Thursday night.

Lewis' resignation ends a 12 year coaching career at G-A, and a five-year run as head coach where he went 54-63, although that record does not reflect the success his teams had, particularly early on.

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"I have absolutely loved coaching Greencastle; it's my adopted home," Lewis said. "I've had wonderful kids; it's been a great ride. And I'm so thankful for the opportunity. I wanted to finish my coaching career there, and unfortunately, you know, it doesn't look like that's going to be able to happen."

In his resignation letter, Lewis said that in a meeting with Athletic Director Vicki Ritchey he was made aware that, "a faction of the Greencastle-Antrim Basketball Community" wanted to move on from him as head coach.

Lewis said that informed him to make his decision.

"I do not want to be a distraction to the student athletes in our program, as there were some strong statements made demanding a change," Lewis said in the letter.

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After going 15-8 in his first regular season with G-A and winning the Mid-Penn Colonial, his Blue Devils won the consolation bracket in the District 3 playoffs to take fifth in the District before falling to Upper Merion in the PIAA tournament.

The next season was even better, as the Blue Devils compiled a 20-3 regular season record and the No. 2 seed in the District 3 playoffs, with another Colonial title in tow. They'd finish seventh, and advance to another PIAA tournament, falling in the first round to Allentown Central Catholic.

After a down 2019-20 season, the Blue Devils surprised in a difficult 2021 season, playing for a playoff spot on the last day of the season, finishing with a 7-10 record.

Lewis' son, Thomas, was a senior this season and will continue his career at Goucher College in the fall, although the coach said his son graduating was not a factor in the decision.

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Lewis also says he doesn't plan on retiring from coaching, although he'll take his time in finding a new job.

"I couldn't have enjoyed my five years as a varsity coach in 12 years overall at Greencastle anymore," Lewis said. "That's going to be a special time for me. And yes, I am able to compartmentalize it and take all the positives. When you still talk to as many ex-players as I talked to, that's why you do it. For the relationships."