Denfeld News

June 13, 2007
Duluth News Tribune

LeGarde named Trojans coach
By Rick Weegman

Unfortunately for Dave LeGarde, his tenure at Duluth Central may be a short one.

At around the same time that the Duluth School Board is expected to affirm LeGarde’s nomination as boys basketball head coach, it also will announce if it intends on closing Central as part of a plan to consolidate the district’s schools. A two-high school plan has the support of the administration.

“I’m not worried about that,” LeGarde said Tuesday, the day he was offered the job. “I’ll stay with it as long as I can.”

LeGarde, 40, is well-known in Duluth high school basketball circles. The 1985 Denfeld graduate spent nine years as an assistant with the Hunters boys team and the past six at crosstown rival East.

“Lately I’ve had thoughts about being a head coach,” LeGarde said. “Quite a few people in the community wanted me to apply for it, so I did.”

LeGarde already spends part of his day at Central in his job as a special education advocate, which he has done for seven years. The rest of his time is spent at Woodland Middle School, where he works as a liaison between the school district and, primarily, American Indian families.

He’ll replace Tom Pearson, who stepped down as coach to concentrate on his duties as Central’s activities director. Pearson guided the Trojans to their first state tournament in 14 years and their 15th in school history in March.

“I’ve always admired Central’s tradition in basketball,” LeGarde said. “I went to a lot of Central’s games as a kid. I’m excited for the opportunity to continue that tradition.”

LeGarde and Pearson have faced off plenty, but this marks the first time they’ll be on the same side.

“I’m excited to have him as our coach,” said Pearson, a 1986 Central graduate. “He has a lot of enthusiasm for the job. Dave’s a quality guy and I was glad he was interested in the program.”

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