EL PASO, TEXAS (KTSM) – The Austin Panthers officially have a new boys basketball coach.
30-year-old Rick Sapien was introduced on Monday afternoon as the replacement for the legendary Stacy Spencer, who recently retired.
Sapien spent the last few seasons as an assistant coach at Ysleta, nd was instrumental in the Indians’ run to the third round of the Class 5A playoffs in the 2020-21 season. Sapien is excited to get his shot at being a head coach.
“I think tradition is huge, and coming to Austin, it starts with that,” Sapien said. “There’s a lot of honor in taking this position. I look forward to being on the sideline representing the Golden Panthers and representing a community that has so much tradition and respect.”
The Panthers finished third in a tough District 1-5A in 2020-2021, and the cupboard certainly won’t be bare for Sapien in his first year as a head coach. He hopes to take the Panthers on deep playoff runs, much like he helped Ysleta do in 2021.
“I’ve never been the coach to look too much into the future. We focus on what we’re doing right now and everything else comes into place,” Sapien said.