By Mark Lewis

One thing is certain for Reeths-Puffer’s boys varsity basketball program: there will be a new head coach prowling the sidelines for the Rockets this winter.Reeths-Puffer Athletic Director Tony Schmitt confirmed Monday that previous head coach, Dalrecus Stewart, will not return for the 2012-13 season.

“I was happy with the way Coach Stewart ran the program,” said Schmitt. “But we’ve chosen to go in a different direction.”

Stewart, who coached the Rockets four seasons, took over for Tim Mitchelson prior to the 2008 season. The next season, Stewart helped forward Chris Anderson – who was known for his high flying, above-the-rim game – to a McDonald’s All-American selection. The 2009-10 season also was the last time the Rockets had a winning record. Previous to coaching the Rockets, Stewart was an assistant coach at Muskegon Heights. Schmitt said a new coach could be named as soon as later this week. The Local Sports Journal will provide an update to this story as soon Stewart’s replacement is announced.

Also, Schmitt also addressed the rumors floating around the community that Reeths-Puffer could benefit from an influx of players from Muskegon Heights, which will be converting to a charter school this fall.

There is some question whether Muskegon Heights will field sports teams this fall.

“As of now, we haven’t heard anything from our admission (office),” said Schmitt, regarding any Muskegon Heights students transferring to Reeths-Puffer and participating in sports.

“I think Muskegon and Mona Shores would likely get the majority of transfers,” he said.

The Michigan High School Athletic Association’s Executive Committee  is scheduled to hand down a ruling this Wednesday which would determine whether or not Muskegon Heights student-athletes would be required to sit out the first semester.

If the committee deems Muskegon Heights a ‘closed school,’ student-athletes from that school district would not be required to sit out a semester. Either way,  Schmitt said, administrators at the new Muskegon Heights charter school could choose to ‘release’ students, allowing them to play this fall.