GREEN BAY – The Green Bay Southwest girls basketball team is looking for a new coach.
Erin Barkley informed her players on Sunday that she has decided to step down after three seasons.
“Coaches at all levels of basketball dedicate a lot of time and energy to build quality programs with strong standards and expectations of consistent success,” Barkley said. “I was blessed with an opportunity to do that at Southwest High School and I am sincerely grateful for it. Amy Hogan is one of the most supportive athletic directors I have been around, and the youth program, which has been growing and expanding has a lot of talent coming up.
“There is a lot of positivity happening at Southwest and as much as it hurts to step away, it was a choice we felt was necessary as a family. I am proud of the young women who have made us a competitive team each of the past three seasons. There is a group of quality young women who will do great things on the court, but more importantly off of the court as they progress through life. I am sure the group of upperclassmen will make some noise in the FRCC next year, but I also look forward to seeing the impact they have at Southwest and in the Green Bay community in the future.”
Southwest had winning seasons each year under Barkley, including 12-11 in 2018-19.
She went 41-31 during her tenure after becoming a varsity head coach for the first time in April 2016 when the Trojans hired her to replace Casey Zakowski.
Barkley is not leaving the cupboard empty at Southwest. The next coach will take over a team that boasts one of the best players in program history in point guard Jaddan Simmons, who was a first-team all-conference selection in the Fox River Classic as a junior this past season and the league’s player of the year as a sophomore.
The 5-foot-8 Simmons has more than 15 Division I scholarship offers, including from each of the four Wisconsin schools.
Barkley was an assistant coach at Green Bay Notre Dame under Sara Rohde for four seasons before going to Southwest. The Tritons made the WIAA Division 2 state tournament three times during that span, including winning state championships in 2013 and 2014.
She also has been with the Purple Aces club basketball program since 2011 and is expected to continue her role. She is the coach of the 15U team and the club’s youth coordinator. Her husband, Cordero, is the Aces’ program director.
“Erin was such a fun coach to play for,” former Notre Dame and University of Wisconsin-Green Bay guard Allie LeClaire said. “She really has a nice eye for the game. She really wants to help you improve your game, and I was so happy I was able to learn from such a talented player and coach.”
Barkley was a prep star at Richland Center and a key defensive piece at the collegiate level with UWGB. After redshirting her first year in 2004-05, she helped the Phoenix reach the NCAA tournament in 2007 and 2009.