PORT ANGELES — Port Angeles High School gained a new boys head coach while losing another one Wednesday.
Thirty-year-old Erik Lathen, the third generation of a long-line of successful head prep basketball coaches, accepted the vacant boys basketball position. The Houston educator and coach had two other offers but decided to come to Port Angeles because of the community and the opportunity to coach a winning program.
“I won’t go somewhere I can’t win,” Lathen said frankly by telephone from his Houston home Wednesday night.
Lathen has good memories of his visit to the North Olympic Peninsula.
“I was thoroughly impressed with the community,” he said. “It’s where I would want to raise my kids, and it’s where I’ll have the community support to have a successful program.”
Lathen and his wife, Ginger, are expecting their first child, a son, within the next two weeks.
“If it wasn’t for that, I would already be up there,” he said.
Losing soccer coach
At the same time Port Angeles is gaining an energetic basketball coach, it is losing its longtime and successful boys soccer coach. Scott Soule submitted his resignation to spend more time with his family.
Port Angeles School District Athletic Director Scott Brodhun said the search for a soccer coach would begin immediately.
Meanwhile, Lathen is ready to take over the basketball program from Lee Sinnes, another longtime and successful Roughrider coach.
This will be Lathen’s first head coaching position. For the past five years he was an assistant basketball and football coach at Class 5A Cypress Creek High School in Houston. Cypress Creek has 3,200 students.Lathen, though, plans to follow in the footsteps of his father and grandfather, both coaching high school basketball teams to state championships.