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Jason Kline steps down as St. Mary's girls basketball coach

St. Mary's of Lancaster is in need of a new girls basketball coach.

Jason Kline has stepped down as coach, Head of School Kevin Kelleher confirmed Wednesday.

“After discussions about family, health, acquiring a new business, and just overall priorities, Coach Kline has respectfully decided it’s always family first,” Kelleher said in a news release. “It is clearly evident that Jason has done some amazing things to really take our women’s basketball program to the next level.”

Kline was an All-American pitcher at Canisius College who played two seasons in the minor leagues and has been inducted into the Western New York Baseball Hall of Fame. He has been a physical education teacher for more than 20 years, coached boys basketball teams at West Seneca East and Holland before taking time off to coach his daughters’ travel teams, and then coached four seasons at St. Mary's.

Kline's daughters, Kaylin and Myla, are leaving St. Mary's and will enroll at Holland, Myla said.

Myla, who will be a senior, was an All-Western New York fourth-team selection last season after averaging 11.7 points and 2.2 points. A 5-7 guard, earned first-team All-Catholic honors after leading the Monsignor Martin in 3-pointers (70).

Jason Kline could not be reached for comment, but Myla said her father's decision was based on a desire to spend more time with Kaylin.

Last summer, doctors at Children’s Hospital discovered an abnormality in Kline’s heart and referred her to the Cleveland Clinic. She was diagnosed with hypertrophic obstructive cardiomyopathy, a genetic disease in which the heart muscle thickens and has difficulty pumping blood.

“When we went to the Cleveland Clinic, Kaylin was in congestive heart failure, less than 50 percent of her heart was functioning, and she was at a high risk for sudden cardiac arrest,” Jason Kline told the News last September.

Kaylin, who will be a sophomore, played on the boys golf team at St. Mary's last fall after her condition forced her to stop playing basketball and soccer.

The Lancers posted a 21-3 mark last season with two of the losses coming against longtime power and eventual Monsignor Martin High School Athletic Association playoff champion Cardinal O'Hara.

After an 11-14 campaign in his first season, Kline guided the Lancers to 22-6, 20-10 and 21-3 records.

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