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Boca Ciega girls basketball coach Will White, who led the Pirates to state final four appearances the past three seasons, resigned Friday.
He said the decision was not based on the team's loss to Clearwater in Tuesday's region semifinals. Instead, White decided to step down because he has been coaching high school basketball at the junior varsity and varsity level the past 15 years, and he said he wanted to spend more time with his family.
"I told them it had nothing to do with (Tuesday night), and the only reason I'm letting this be known right away was to give (Boca Ciega principal Michael) Vigue all the time he needed in order to find the best replacement possible," White said. "This is something I thought about for a while. I don't want to miss out on my boys growing up. (His two sons are 4 and 6). Life is too short, and I want to be the best father anyone could ever imagine."
In eight seasons, White compiled a 193-45 record with six district championships and seven straight 20-win seasons. He also has kept intact the Pirates' streak of making the playoffs for 19 seasons, the third-longest streak in the state, trailing Jacksonville Ribault (21) and Fort Walton Beach (20).
White said his proudest accomplishment, though, is having all 27 seniors that have been through the program during his tenure go on to college, including 10 on basketball scholarships. Boca Ciega's top senior this season, Tamara Taylor, has signed to play for the University of South Florida.
White will teach social studies at the school, and said he will coach again in the future.
"I'll probably give it a few years to focus on my family," White said. "But I'll definitely get back into it. This is not a retirement."
A timetable has not been set to find White's replacement.
""I told the girls there is never a good time to step down," White said. "There would always be a senior group that you should stick around for or a great group of up-and-coming players."