The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

High School Sports

March 23, 2013

Killingsworth takes Mount Vernon coaching post

Dusty Killingsworth was a spectator for a relatively short time.

Killingsworth, Student Government Association adviser this year at Willard High School, has been named head girls basketball coach at Mount Vernon for 2013-14.

Killingsworth had been the Willard boys head coach the previous three years after four as the girls coach.

“I’m really excited,” Killingsworth said Saturday. “I’ve met with the Mount Vernon players. They were very respectful. I felt very comfortable with the administration during a couple of visits.

“I’m learning names,” Killingsworth said with a laugh. “I knew (freshman) Laynie Dake — I know her dad Chuck — and I was familiar with (sophomore) Mackenzie Farmer because of the all-conference (Big 8) lists.”

The new job will mean only five more minutes of daily driving time, Killingsworth said.

Killingsworth indicated that this year had been fulfilling, interesting and busy. Time to reflect also revealed he still had the passion to coach.

The Mount Vernon position became open with the decision of Jamie LaSalle to take the football post at Marionville High School. The Mountaineers thus will have their third different head coach in as many years.

It will be a plus, Killingsworth said, that Michelle Rust and T.J. Hagerman return as his assistants.

Killingsworth, a 1991 graduate of Greenfield High School, was involved more with football than basketball when he came to Missouri Southern.

But he drifted to basketball and a season as student manager for Southern coach Robert Corn cemented the passion for roundball.

Killingsworth did his student teaching at Thomas Jefferson under Mike Grove. His first coaching post, while still attending Southern, was at the middle school level for McAuley Catholic and Steve Garner.

Killingsworth wound up spending seven years at McAuley in several capacities — in addition to basketball — before moving to Seneca for two years as girls coach.

Killingsworth is married to the former Tiffani Little of Greenfield. She’s administrator at Parkcrest Dental Group in Springfield. They have a son, Kaden, 11.

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