Home Education and Careers Saint Mark’s High School names Val Karch new girls basketball coach

Saint Mark’s High School names Val Karch new girls basketball coach

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Val Karch

MILLTOWN — Val Karch, a 1995 Saint Mark’s High School graduate and a longtime girls basketball coach with the Spartans, has been named the head coach of the girls’ program at her alma mater.

Karch has been coaching basketball for 24 years. She joined the staff at Saint Mark’s in 1999 after graduating from York College and was an assistant to coach John Fiorelli. The Spartans won state championships from 2000-02. She served as the junior varsity head coach from 2002-16, when she took some time off to coach her daughter Sophia’s team at St. John the Beloved. She returned to Saint Mark’s in 2019 as the JV coach and an assistant varsity coach. She also coached her son’s team at St. John the Beloved for a year while retaining her duties at Saint Mark’s.

Karch said her team will “be getting back to basics” in the upcoming season. “I’m excited about the future of Saint Mark’s girls basketball. We have a lot of young talent, and I think we will end up surprising a lot of people.”

Karch succeeds Jim Freel, himself a Saint Mark’s graduate. Freel is a 1977 alumnus.

In addition to her coaching duties, Karch works at the school as assistant director of advancement, a position she assumed in February 2022.

As a player for the Spartans, Val Speakman was a four-year varsity point guard, earning third-team all-state honors. She continued playing at York College, where she averaged seven points and five assists per game.