Dave Kyle takes over at TCHS

HAMBLETON – Dave Kyle knows it’s not going to be an easy task taking over the Tucker County High School boys’ basketball program. After all, he’s replacing former head coach Tom Gutshall, who earned more than 500 victories over 30-plus seasons.

“It’s going to be a difficult task trying to keep up the tradition that coach Gutshall built over the past 30-plus years,” Kyle said. “I’m really excited and looking forward to the challenge.”

The Tucker County board of education voted Monday to name Kyle the new head coach. Kyle has served the past 14 years as the Athletic Director at TCHS and will continue to hold that position, as well.

“There is a lot of pressure, as far as the boys team goes,” Kyle said. “The team has advanced to the state tournament for the past 13 years. So I think my first goal is to keep that tradition going, but it’s going to be tough. We’ve got a young team and we’re only returning two starters. We’ve lost 80 percent of the offense. I’m going to do my best and see where we can take it.”

Kyle said returning starters include Austin Zirk and Owen Evans, along with letterman Landon Dillard.

Kyle is no stranger to coaching basketball. He coached the TCHS girls varsity team from 1985 to 2001 and served as an assistant coach to Gutshall for the boys varsity team from 1984 to 1993. He also started the Tucker Valley Middle School football program in 2007 and coached there until last season.

Gutshall announced his retirement after Tucker County’s loss to Notre Dame in the quarterfinals of the Class A state tournament.