Things are going to look a lot different on the Ipswich girls basketball team next year after head coach Mandy Carter-Zegarowski announced that she is stepping down.
Her 10-year tenure with the Tigers has seen its fair share of highlights, with seven Cape Ann League titles and over 150 wins.
Her decision to leave the program came after her son, Syracuse star Michael Carter-Williams, announced that he would enter this year’s NBA Draft, where he is expected to be a lottery pick. A mother first, Carter-Zegarowski wants to be able to help manage her elder son’s career and have time to go to her younger children’s basketball games, without coaching interfering.
“I want to be able to be part of what my kids are doing,” said Carter-Zegarowski. “I wasn’t really sure until Michael was in the (NCAA) Final Four and decided to go into the NBA Draft. I really love what I do, so it made it much harder to step away ... I just want to watch my kids.
“As much as we know basketball, Michael going into the draft is a whole new world for us.”
Carter-Zegarowski, who led the Tigers to a 17-4 mark this past winter, let Ipswich High Athletic Director Tom Gallagher know of her decision a few days ago. He’ll look to fill the position by the end of the school year.
“She told let us she’s stepping down primarily for family reasons,” said Gallagher. “Knowing Mandy, she gives 110 percent to everything she does and with everything going on right now, she knew she wouldn’t be able to (coach).
“Its huge a position to fill. Mandy’s done an amazing job and definitely put the program on the map.”
Over the past two seasons, Carter-Zegarowski had the chance coach her daughter Masey at Ipswich. Masey, who dominated the court as the Tigers’ point guard and was this past season’s Salem News Player of the Year, dazzled as one of premiere players on the North Shore.