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Channel Islands Appoints Willard, 39, Football Coach

March 27, 1997

Jack Willard, a long-time assistant football coach in the Ventura County area, is taking a step up.

He nonetheless hopes to feel right at home in his new position as head coach at Channel Islands High.

Willard, named the Raiders' football coach Tuesday, grew up in Oxnard, has lived in Ventura County nearly his entire life and has taught and coached in the area for the past 16 years.

He replaces Joel Gershon, long-time Channel Islands coach who resigned after last season.

"I've always had a desire to be a head football coach, and this was a very attractive opportunity for me," Willard said.

"I'm extremely comfortable with this area. I already know some of the people who I'll be working with on the Channel Islands campus, and I'm eager to meet all the players. I'm looking forward to getting over there."

An English teacher at Camarillo High, where he was baseball coach from 1990 to 1994, Willard, 39, has spent the past two seasons as linebacker coach at Moorpark College.

He was offensive coordinator at Camarillo High for one season and the Scorpions' defensive coordinator from 1988 to 1993.

Channel Islands Athletic Director Al Tarazon, a member of the selection committee, called the choice an easy one.

"Jack, I think through his experience, his background, and his presentation, was far and away the best candidate," Tarazon said.

"He's a local boy, he knows the people here, and he'll be a very good fit for Channel Islands High."

Willard, a Camarillo resident, said he will finish out the school year at Camarillo High, and transfer to a teaching position at Channel Islands in September.

Committed: Rio Mesa soccer midfielder Adam Reeves has committed to Gonzaga.

Reeves had five goals and four assists to help the Spartans win the Channel League title, their first in the program's 19-year history. He was a third-team All-Southern Section selection.

Woman of Troy: Notre Dame High outside hitter Kathryn Martin has been accepted to USC and will try to make the volleyball team as a walk-on. She was an All-Mission League the past two seasons.

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