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Johnson steps down at Bell-Jeff

After leading program to two successful seasons, Guards' athletic director and girls' basketball coach resigns to accept a position at Santa Monica City College.

May 24, 2012|BY JEFF TULLY
(Cheryl A. Guerrero…)

When Jaclyn Johnson was asked to take over the girls' basketball coaching duties at Bellarmine-Jefferson High prior to the 2010-11 season, the former Guards standout player had to live up to high expectations.

In the previous eight years, former coach Bryan Camacho built the program into one of the most successful in the state. He accumulated a 183-50 record and had a .785 winning percentage. In addition, Bell-Jeff won three straight Santa Cruz League titles, a CIF Southern Section title in 2009 and captured a state championship the same year.

Her accomplishments throughout the course of the last two seasons saw Johnson keep Bell-Jeff's winning tradition going. However, after just two seasons leading the Guards' program, Johnson is stepping down to take a job in the athletic department at Santa Monica City College.

During her tenure, Bell-Jeff went 47-14 for a .770 winning percentage, and notched a 16-0 record in the Santa Cruz League, capturing two league crowns. The Guards also advanced to the CIF Southern Section semifinals in both seasons and earned two wins in the state playoffs.

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Johnson, 32, who also served as the school's athletic director, said her new position is less hectic than that which she leaves at Bell-Jeff, and it also gives her time to work on her master's degree in athletic administration.

"There is less responsibility, and I started my master's, so this will give me the opportunity to focus on that so I can get that done in an expeditious manner," she said. "This position is a lot less taxing, and continuing my education is important to me."

A 1997 Bell-Jeff graduate, Johnson came to the school to be its athletic director. However, she was pressed into service as the girls' basketball coach and she admitted wearing two hats took up a great deal of her time.

"I love Bell-Jeff, and I always will," Johnson said. "I loved working with the kids and I really learned a lot. But I didn't come here to coach, that wasn't my intention. In the time that I did coach, I hope I was able to teach life lessons more than anything. More than basketball, it was about teaching responsibility and accountability, and hopefully I was able to instill some of that into the players."

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