Schumacher steps down at Conotton

Eric Schumacher is growing accustomed to last-minute opportunities.

However, he wasn’t about to handcuff Conotton Valley High School.

Schumacher – the Monroe Central Class of 2003 graduate – was hired in the middle of the summer in 2012 to serve as the Rockets head coach. His first coaching assignment was the Rudy Mumley OVAC All-Star Game that same summer.

Just before the start of this season, Schumacher received a call from Dover City Schools that he’d been hired to teach there.

“We were in the middle of two-a-days and I got the call,” Schumacher said.

Wanting to see how it would work out and not put the Rockets in a tough spot, Schumacher got approval from Dover to continue his coaching duties for the season.

“I wanted to at least stay this season for our seniors,” Schumacher said. “I didn’t want those kids to have a different head coach every year of their careers. I just could not have left them high and dry.”

After giving it a try, the travel and time involved just got to be too much for Schumacher. He recently submitted his formal resignation to Conotton Valley officials.

“I wanted to see how it was going to work out, but it was hard teaching and living in Dover and going so far out of the road to coach,” Schumacher said. “I talked it over with my wife and just decided it was time to hang it up and possibly coach at the younger levels in Dover.”

In his two seasons, Schumacher guided the Rockets to a 6-13 mark overall. After fighting through an injury-plagued campaign, this past season, the Rockets finished 1-8.

“It was a rewarding two years,” Schumacher said. “We had a lot of things go our way and some things not go our way. We just couldn’t stay healthy and in a small school, you have to make due with what you have. So, there were some positive things, but also some disappointing things.”

Schumacher, who owns a bachelor’s degree from Ohio University and is currently pursuing his master’s degree, believes the Rockets have some pieces in place to be successful in the coming seasons.

“There are definitely some parts to play with, so I wanted to make sure (the school) had plenty of time to find a quality candidate,” Schumacher said. “I’ve been in that position of trying to find a quality coach in limited time. I think the school will be able to find a person who can do the job and serve the players, school and community to the best of their ability.”

At Dover, Schumacher is teaching math and science inclusion at the high school level.

“I appreciate the Dover administration allowing me to coach at Conotton,” Schumacher said. “They even let me leave a little earlier in my day to make it to practice. They were just awesome about understanding the situation.”

Schumacher and his wife, Dani, who is also employed with the Tornadoes, reside in Dover.

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