Kingston baseball coach resigns; football coach steps in

Kingston baseball sits fourth in the Olympic League with a 9-6 record, 6-5 in league. The Buccaneers are looking for their third postseason appearance in seven years.

However, the program suddenly changed April 15 when Gerald Butler stepped down as baseball coach with a couple of weeks left in the regular season. “It has been my pleasure to lead the Kingston High School baseball program since 2021, but I must unfortunately step down as head coach due to multiple personal reasons,” Butler said. “The student-athletes and coaches of Kingston High School are amazing and they have made a difference in my life and I hope I made a positive difference in theirs.”

In Butler’s three seasons, he amassed a 19-27 record and led the Bucs to the district tournament in 2022 as a 13 seed. Butler is credited with playing a huge role in improving the baseball and softball programs at Kingston High School. “I was lucky enough to oversee, and contribute to, the growth of this program through increasing participation, support, player development, player opportunities, access to technology, improved equipment and improved facilities,” Butler said.

Butler built partnerships with the school district facilities, Integrity Roofing, Latitude 48 Group, the S’Klallam and Suquamish tribes and more to raise over $100,000 for the baseball and softball programs. “Gerry has been a tremendous asset to Kingston baseball and a key partner with Kingston fastpitch,” athletic director Ed Call said. “The news of his departure will sting for some time. Gerry has been such a great program builder.”

Since Butler stepped down, junior varsity coach Ethan Goldizen has taken over as interim coach. “I expressed my interest and comfortability with it with Ed,” Goldizen said. “He decided to go with me from my experience as our head football coach.”

Goldizen was a three-year varsity player at Olympic High School, earning second-team All-League honors as a pitcher. He was recruited by Linfield and Pacific Lutheran but chose to play football at the University of Puget Sound.

Goldizen’s transition has been smooth because “many of the varsity guys already knew my personality, my coaching style, and my energy from being at practice together every day.”

Goldizen has won two of his first three games and kept Kingston within the reach of the postseason. However, the transition has been stressful for Goldizen. Kingston has stacked its JV and varsity games so he can coach both teams. “Having to go to work all day and then coach two full games wears on you a bit,” Goldizen said. “But our staff doesn’t make excuses and will continue to lead these kids into a well-earned playoff push.”

As for next season, Goldizen is unsure about returning as the head coach. “I’ll entertain that idea later,’ Goldizen said. “My focus right now is solely on this season and getting our seniors a playoff spot that this program hasn’t seen in a few years.”