SPRING VALLEY — Brian Holman has been a winner on the basketball court at Hall High School.
His Lady Devils won their fourth straight regional championship this year, reaching the sectional finals for the second time.
They won 20 or more games (21-9) for the fourth straight year, 90 over that stretch.
During the middle of this season, however, with his second child on the way, he started having thoughts that coaching was taking away where he was needed most — at home.
After their season-ending sectionals finals loss to Winnebago, six days after his wife, Abby, went into labor during the regional championship, Holman shared the mid-season doubts he had been feeling.
He said he went home one night and told Abby, “I think this is it. I really do.”
But the Lady Devils rejuvenated their coach with their late season play. They won their fourth straight regional title, and he garnered BCR Girls Basketball Coach of the Year honors for the third straight year.
“At the end of the day, I don’t think I’m a lifer,” Holman said that night at sectionals. “I really like the home life, I like my kids. Those thoughts started creeping into my head, and these girls really did everything they could to take me out of that. They fought back and when they started fighting back, then you have a reason to fight back with them.
“You don’t want to be thinking those thoughts halfway through a season. ‘Is this for me? Am I done here?’”
Holman also said reading the girls’ comments about having fun and seeing pictures of their happy faces after games also reinforce his desire to coach.
“As a coach, that gives you a boost. That’s why I’m here. That’s why I spend night after night away. That’s why my wife’s in labor and I’m at a game. You start thinking crazy thoughts,” he said. “They really saved me there halfway through the season. Kind of picked me up when I needed it. I picked them up when they needed it, and we became a pretty good team.”
And while he said he plans to return for a sixth season at Hall, he knows he’s not in for the long haul.
“I really enjoy the family life. When they get older, I’m done. I want to be around then. I don’t want to be the guy, ‘Ah, dad’s got a game (and is not here),’” he said of his kids’ future activities.
The new baby came the day (Feb. 8) after the regional championship and Dad made it there. That date happens to the same birthday of his oldest daughter, Quinn.
“I couldn’t believe it when she was born on the same day,” he said.