Hewitt girls hoops coach leaves for Mountain Brook, new coach approved
By Gary Lloyd
TRUSSVILLE — Hewitt-Trussville varsity girls basketball coach Stu Stuedeman has left to become an assistant coach for the Mountain Brook varsity boys basketball team, and Trussville City Schools has filled his position.
Tonya Hunter was approved on Monday as the next Hewitt-Trussville varsity girls hoops coach. Hunter comes to Hewitt-Trussville after 10 seasons at Shades Valley, which posted a 31-4 record last season and won the Class 6A state championship 63-49 over Sparkman. Hunter won more than 200 games at Shades Valley. She was also an assistant coach for the Auburn University-Montgomery women’s basketball team for four years. Hunter played on the 1994 Eufaula High School state championship team.
“I just think Hewitt-Trussville has untapped greatness here,” Hunter said. “I just feel like if you can get into the community and get the kids excited about playing basketball and competing and seeing the results of playing and competing hard, it’ll keep the kids excited. So many kids here, from rec league to high school, I feel like could be successful here.”
Hunter likes to play an up-tempo style.
“I’m a defensive coach,” Hunter said. “I believe defense creates offense.”
Hunter said she believes the community will see a “rise” in the girls basketball program at Hewitt-Trussville.
“They’re definitely going to see the energy and effort,” Hunter said.
Stuedeman posted a 26-33 record in two years as the Hewitt-Trussville head coach.
“I am extremely thankful for the opportunity I was given to coach girls’ basketball at Hewitt-Trussville High School,” Stuedeman said. “I enjoyed my time working at HTHS and loved every minute of coaching my girls and building this program together with them. I truly wish I could have remained the head coach at Hewitt but the unfortunate circumstance was that I made more money as a custodian at an elementary school while finishing up my master’s degree in education than I did as the in-school detention aide and head girls basketball coach at Hewitt. So when the back-to-back state champions and best boys basketball program in the state called me and asked me what it would take for me to join their staff and the best public high school in the state interviews me and offers me a job where I can earn a living it kind of forced my hand to leave.”
Stuedeman said it was “disappointing that a school as great as Hewitt-Trussville would not find an opportunity for a passionate certified teacher and coach to remain on staff and earn a living.”
Stuedeman said he was hurting for the girls at Hewitt-Trussville.
“The girls’ hard work helped establish a foundation to get this program on a winning path and with the team coming back and core concepts our girls have embraced the new coach is set up to succeed,” he said. “The job the girls and I had placed before us to rebuild this program was a seemingly impossible one but through dedication, hard work, toughness, and togetherness we chased our lions and got this program on the right track. I am so proud of my players and I will miss them greatly. This was the hardest decision I ever had to make in my life, these girls are my family, but I am excited for this new opportunity at Mountain Brook. I am truly grateful for Mountain Brook High School and coach Bucky McMillan for recognizing and appreciating my talent and passion for both education and basketball, and providing me with this amazing opportunity.”
Contact Gary Lloyd at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @GaryALloyd.