Spartans name Downey new basketball coach

Aug. 16, 2014 @ 06:32 PM

Kerr-Vance Academy’s new boys basketball coach is former Wake Forest guard Taron Downey, a 2000 J.F. Webb graduate.

Downey succeeds David Carrier, who coached the Spartans for eight seasons before leaving for Westchester Country Day School.

Downey said he didn’t know much about the program other than scrimmaging the Spartans when he suited up for Webb.

“I’m looking forward to getting out there and helping them learn the game of basketball,” said Downey, “and being a positive influence.”

Downey averaged 9.9 points as a senior at Wake in 2004-05.

He played professionally in Europe for about 10 seasons including last year in Cyprus.

“We’re excited to have him join us,” said Brian Russell, KVA’s co-athletic director. “I think his qualifications as a player will really help him gain instant respect with the younger kids. I think he’ll be a real good role model. I think he’ll be a good asset for Kerr-Vance Academy.”

Most recently, Downey coached on the AAU level.

Downey, 32, will serve only as a basketball coach at KVA.

Carrier led KVA to five state tournament appearances and two regular season conference titles.

The Spartans finished 10-13 last season.

“Being a competitor, you always want to win,” said Downey. “You want to bring a winning tradition. You just want to help the kids become better men in life. And that’s off the court. On the court, just help them learn things that maybe they don’t know or help them enhance those things.”

Contact the writer at kholtzman@hendersondispatch.com.