Call it somewhat of a sabbatical.
Dave Kurtz resigned as head coach of the Hudson boys golf team after the fall season.
Don’t expect him to leave the Explorers for good, though.
Kurtz decided to step down to focus on his two children, who are currently competing for their respective collegiate teams.
His son Will, a former state champion at Hudson, will be a rising senior on the Kent State University men’s golf team once the fall season begins. Kurtz’s daughter Emma concluded her sophomore season as a member of the Auburn (Alabama) University equestrian team, which won the 2019 National Collegiate Equestrian Association title.
However, once the siblings complete their collegiate careers, Kurtz expects to be back in the Explorers’ saddle.
"That’s the plan," he said.
For now, Kurtz will focus on his two children. Of course, that doesn’t mean he won’t be too far away from his former guys.
"I’ll be around," Kurtz said. "I’ll still do the junior high league. I’m going to keep that going. Even though I’m not coaching, I’ll be kind of organizing. It will keep me tied in with the younger kids coming up."
Kurtz led Hudson to a Division I sectional title and a second-place finish in the Suburban League National Conference standings last fall. His teams won three conference titles and reached the state competition twice during his six-year tenure.
Kurtz also guided two individuals, Will and Ben Basta, to the state competition while leading the Explorers.
"I knew I wanted to step down at the start of last season if not before," Kurtz said. "I let Mr. (Hudson athletic director Mike) Chuppa know once the season was over. Mike did a great job of posting the position right away to get the wheels going."
Kurtz, who once was an assistant coach with Hudson’s girls golf team in the early 2000s, will now have his weekends free since he is no longer a head coach.
"Both of my kids might have an extra year of eligibility," Kurtz said. "I won’t be there for the tournaments, but I’ll try to get to as many of (Hudson’s) home matches as I can. I need those weekends so I can hop in a car and drive for six hours."
Fortunately for Kurtz, he knows his former and perhaps future team is in good hands. Matt Villenauve, whose son Burke concluded a stellar career with the Explorers during the fall, replaced Kurtz as the team’s leading man.
"Matt has helped me out a bunch the last couple of seasons," Kurtz said. "I’ve asked his opinion on a lot of things. He has a good knowledge of the game and is super organized.
"He has a great personality. He’s always upbeat and positive. I don’t think it will be much of an issue transition-wise."
Kurtz told his players about his decision not long after the 2019 season ended. Although he does plan to be back, Kurtz will miss seeing his former players on a regular basis.
"It was a little bittersweet," he said. "It was all good, though. A little break might do me some good. In terms of a personal aspect, these are the years that I can’t get back with my kids.
"Life is about making decisions. You do what you think is best and this is the best decision. I get to enjoy watching them compete for their last couple of seasons."
Reporter Frank Aceto can be reached at 330-541-9444, firstname.lastname@example.org or @FrankAceto_Gannett.