By Brian Pitts
Davie Enterprise Record
David Koontz is ecstatic about coming to Davie High to teach and coach. He’s had his eye on Davie for quite some time, and he finally got the opening he’s been waiting for.
He will teach drafting, SciVis and Engineering Technology & Design. He will be an assistant coach in cross country this fall. He will be the head coach in swimming this winter, replacing Cass Jones, who resigned after two years.
Why is joining the War Eagle family particularly special to Koontz? Even though he’s spent the past 11 years at Glenn and West Iredell high schools, he’s always been a War Eagle at heart. This is where he grew up. DC has always been his home.
Koontz’s family roots in Davie County are several miles long. His mother, Helen Myers, taught at South Davie before retiring. His father is Bill Koontz of Mocksville. His grandmother, Madeleine Sparks, taught chemistry at Davie. His aunt, Nancy Miller, taught English at North Davie and Davie. His uncle, Dwight Sparks, is the editor/publisher of the Enterprise.
Koontz, 33, graduated from Davie in 1997. He played football on a historic team in 1996.
“I’m definitely a true Davie Countian,” Koontz said.
He grew up on Spillman Road in Mocksville. He never left DC, even when he taught at Glenn and West Iredell. He lives on Calahaln Road in Mocksville. He and wife Nicole have three kids - an 8-year-old boy, a 4-year-old girl and a 22-month-old boy.
“I’ve been waiting on a job at Davie for 11 years, and it finally came open,” he said. “It was tough to say goodbye to West Iredell. I had a good group (of swimmers) over there. Those kids were pretty upset when they heard the news. I was upset, too. But when it comes down to your family and where your kids are going to be going to school, that trumps everything else.”
Koontz played football four years at Davie. As a senior he was a mammoth 6-5, 265-pound offensive lineman. Since then, he has transformed his body into a triathlete, trimming down to 200, teaching fitness classes at the YMCA and maintaining a rigorous workout regimen.
In the fall of ‘96, the War Eagles became a real-life “Rocky” or “Rudy” or “Hoosiers.” They delivered a monumental turnaround during an 8-5 season that saw them finish second in the Central Piedmont Conference. They posted the most wins in 12 years, and they won the first playoff game in school history.
Koontz, a starter at right tackle, was apart of two unforgettable wins in the regular season. When Benjie Brown’s War Eagles traveled to Starmount for a nonconference game, the Rams were ranked No. 1 in 2-A. Davie pulled off the shocker 14-13 after trailing 13-0.
“B.W. Holt got kicked out (after a pass-interference call),” Koontz said of the revered former coach of Starmount.
In the regular-season finale, the No. 2 seed was on the line when West Forsyth invaded War Eagle Stadium. West was an overwhelming favorite, having defeated Davie eight straight years. But Davie scored late in the fourth quarter to win 7-3, leaving the Titans shellshocked.
“Kenny Collins ran that end-around for 35 or 40 yards, and David Daye ran it in for a touchdown,” Koontz said. “I remember it like it was yesterday. The place went nuts. Fans ran on the field and students climbed on the goal posts. Joe Burchette was the quarterback (at West), and J.J. Rice hit him pretty hard and he had to leave the game. That was the signature win of the season, that and the Starmount win.”
Davie was 0-4 in ...