He has been an assistant for nine years
LYNDEN — Lynden Christian didn’t have to look far for a new head coach of its boys basketball program.
The school announced last week that Tim Zylstra will take over the program and serve as the Lyncs’ interim coach for the 2020-21 basketball season. Lynden Christian will open up the position again in mid-March 2021, after the season, according to a press release from the school.
Zylstra has been an assistant coach with the Lyncs for the past nine seasons. Current assistants Brian Sipma and Mike Kortus will also return in their same roles next season.
The school had meetings with Zylstra, Sipma and Kortus before deciding Zylstra would be the next head coach of the Lyncs.
“They called us in a couple of times and Friday morning we were informed this would be best for the kids going forward,” Zylstra said. “All three of us would stay on, but I would take the head job.”
Zylstra will be taking over for Roger DeBoer, who coached Lynden Christian for the past 11 seasons and was let go by school administration in April.
“It’s never easy replacing anyone at LC because of the tradition,” Zylstra said. “We’ll continue to keep things going the same way we’ve always done it.”
He said he wasn’t necessarily looking for a head coaching position, but he loves the game of basketball and also saw this as an opportunity to have an influence on the athletes’ lives.
“It’s more important to me that they’re taught the right way of just life in general and then how to play basketball,” Zylstra said. “More importantly, it’s a way for us to shape some young lives.”
Moving forward, Zylstra said he’s looking forward to working with the group returning to the Lyncs next year, but also wants to give credit to this year’s graduating seniors.
“We’re going to lose some leadership, like you always do, but they were special kids,” he said. “I’m really excited for the younger talent and two of the starters coming back that were very instrumental in our run to second place. There’s just a lot of young talent coming up that I’m very excited for.”
In the meantime, Zylstra said he and the rest of the coaching staff are just waiting to get back in the gym.
There’s uncertainty surrounding summer basketball because of COVID-19, but Zylstra said the coaches can’t wait to start working with the team again.