The basketball Ed Kershner played in his 1950s days as a small-town Indiana high school standout looked like a different game than the frantic version of the sport he coaches today.
But no matter how fastpaced basketball becomes, it can’t outrun a 74-year-old man who underwent his fourth hip surgery last April.
Shorts aren’t short. Guys who look like post players are playing the point. Yet the game hasn’t come close to passing Kershner by.
Now in his 43rd season as a high school coach, Kershner achieved yet another milestone when his 10-1 Oviedo team pulled out a 65-62 homecourt win over rival Hagerty last week. That gave the state all-time wins leader 400 victories in 19 seasons with the Lions. He has a career total of 847 wins since 1971.
“I feel young every day I go into the gym,” Kershner said on Tuesday. “I know my career is coming to an end, there’s no question. Every year I just try to look at it and reevaluate. Right now, I’m still enjoying it. I still cherish it.”
What’s not to love? Kershner is 400-133 in 19 seasons at Oviedo and his Lions are on top of their game. Oviedo captured Kershner’s second state championship last March and is ranked No. 3 in Class 7A this year with sights set on a potential repeat.
“I have been truly blessed to be in this community and get to work with the people and the kids here,” Kershner said. “That makes you want to do what you can to make these kids better.”
The amazing thing about Kershner’s longstanding success is that he’d rank fifth all-time for coaching wins at area schools if you counted only his Oviedo days and forgot about the first 24 seasons he coached at four schools in Indiana and three in Florida.
Oviedo plays a leading Ohio program, Cincinnati Archbishop Moeller (4-1), on Saturday in a first round game at the Battle of the Villages Holiday Tournament.
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