Kirk resigns as men’s hoop coach at Clark

By Meg Wochnick, Columbian staff writer

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Alex Kirk has resigned after four-plus seasons as Clark College’s men’s basketball coach, the college announced Monday.

Kirk coached the first five games of the 2016-17 season, but took a leave of absence in December to focus on family, including the birth of his daughter. While Kirk said his intentions were to return in 2017-18, he noted new coaching opportunities led to his recent decision.

“We’ve decided that now is the time for a new challenge,” he said.

Hired in 2012, Kirk went 66-19 with the Penguins. In 2015, he led Clark to the NWAC Tournament title.

With first-year assistant and interim coach Kevin Johnson at the helm the final 22 games this winter, Clark went 17-10 overall and won the NWAC South Region title. The Penguins lost to Whatcom in overtime, 84-78, in the NWAC Tournament Sweet 16 round.

This season was Johnson’s first college coaching gig after spending the previous 13 seasons at Class 1A Castle Rock High School.

Kirk’s departure is the second coaching change for Clark basketball in 13 months. Al Aldridge resigned in March 2016 after four seasons as women’s basketball coach.