Central Regional High School appointed assistant principal Dr. Stephen Zengel as the school’s new boys basketball coach at the district’s board of education meeting late Thursday night, according to Central Regional athletic director Vincent Casale.
Zengel, a former head coach at two other Shore Conference schools, was most recently an assistant coach under Kurt Fenchel at Central last season. However, Fenchel resigned for personal reasons after one season as the Golden Eagles head coach after going 8-15 and thus an opening was created this spring.
“All I care about is putting the players in a position for them to have success. I’m about player development and putting a strong emphasis on being a student athlete,” Zengel said. “When I was at Point Beach, our players were very good in academics.”
Zengel has a lengthy coaching history.
He was the head boys basketball coach at Point Beach from 1996-2000 and the head boys basketball coach at Red Bank Regional from 2000-2001. He also did a stint as a Hampton University men’s assistant basketball coach from 2007-2009 before rejoining the high school ranks again.
From 2010 to 2011, he was the junior varsity boys basketball coach at Jackson Memorial before becoming the freshman head boys basketball coach and varsity assistant boys basketball coach at Central last season.
“I hope to build upon what Kurt Fenchel started last year and what Mike Clemente did before that,” Zengel said. “Central is a great school with great athletics.”
Zengel becomes the third boys basketball coach Central will have since 2012 after Clemente stepped down in 2012 after 30 years of coaching and Fenchel took his place for the 2012-2013 season.